Whats working, Whats not, Part 1- Extreme marketing

Its almost 7 months since the official launch of MVP and 13 months since MVP was started as a stealth initiative. Its been a great ride working (non-stop) with the passionate and extremely intelligent startup founders.  We have been working closely with the portfolio companies and at the same time have also had the privilege of spending time with 50-60 other startups, we call “Friends of Morpheus”.  With most of these startups we got to know the founders, understand the business model, approach of the team and saw very closely whats working and whats not. I thought it will be a good idea to do a series of posts called “Whats working, Whats not”.

This is  the first post in the series.

Extreme marketing

Now that you have built the most useful app for people to find their next holiday destination or the site with most amazing t-shirts designs or the healthiest organic drink. The next and “the most important” thing you need is people to come see your site/ product, so that some of them can start buying. That’s where ‘marketing’ comes in.  Startups almost never have any marketing budget, but does that mean they wont get anyone in to see / buy their product. Not at all.

Creative startups are coming up with amazing and zero expense ways to spread the word about the cool stuff which they have built. Thats called “extreme marketing” and its working

Examples:

  • Tringme’s guerilla marketing with source code on business cards
  • Lifemojo launched a GTalk buddy who can answer all your questions about calories  (about 300 people signed up in the first week itself)
  • mGinger’s viral MLM campaign (this was way before they got funded) promising 10 paise for every SMS ad you receive and a cut of money that your friends may be making
  • Sutra just today has launched Kaamsutra.info. Check here to see what is the twitter community saying and here for the coverage on pluggd.in
  • Picsquare’s tieup with Tata Indicom, which meant whenever a tata indicom subscriber connected to internet “Picsquare” was right in front.

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Takeaways

  • All of these campaigns have been executed on almost a “zero marketing budget” but on a mindset of exterme innovation and risk taking
  • Most of these have been done in less than a week’s effort.
  • Most of the ideas were shot down / ridiculed by the people who initially heard the idea
  • The teams had the courage to go out and do “extreme stuff”. They were ready to face the backfire as well
  • They play on basic natural needs of human’s from porn to free money to calorie consciousness and more
  • Successful campaigns have a inbuilt characteristic to spread from people to people (network effect) and they make it easy for people to spread it. Specially via twitter, blogs, social networks, mails, SMS.

Let us know comments about your views and the examples of extreme marketing that you have seen..