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Enlist an Advocate: Hire Fractional Marketing Help for Your Startup

Updated: Mar 6

Part Three: 3 Ways to Conquer Shiny Object Syndrome in your Marketing

enlist an outsourced marketing advocate

Consider this a PSA. Startups, don’t let this happen to your marketing.

Startups are busy, frenetic, wonderful places. Truly amazing things are happening in the startup community. But they are filled with shiny objects and tons of projects. It can be tempting to try lots of new tactics in your marketing all at once or to try something new and not give it enough time to produce or track results. This is frustrating for marketers and founders alike. Marketers get burned out quickly when they get bounced around on projects and founders often end up feeling unsatisfied with results. Part 1 and 2 of this three-part series discussed how cleaning up your messaging and finding the right tools can help keep shiny objects at bay. The last step is finding an advocate.

Let’s Do a Quick Review

The nimble, rapid pace of most startups are perfect breeding grounds for “shiny object syndrome”: where your attention is caught by one item, only to be caught by something even shinier, and so on and so forth. And while this syndrome can apply to your overall business, it also applies to your marketing, leading to frustration, wasted time, and poor results.

In order to counteract shiny object syndrome, you need a plan, a guide, and a strategy. Part one of this three-part blog series covered the foundation of any good marketing strategy: messaging. Specifically, how ‘Cleaning up your Messaging’ is essential to avoid shiny object syndrome. Clear effective messaging is essential to creating a business that stands out, has purpose, and solves customer's problems. Like any good foundation, it must be built first. Once you’ve laid the foundation, it’s time to work on shiny object trap number two: marketing tools.

Part two is all about finding the right marketing tools that allow your startup to scale, streamline processes, and nurture leads. And there is no shortage of tools and software available to help with your marketing. The sheer number of options can be overwhelming to the point of being unhelpful and you can quickly find yourself in a sea of shiny objects. Stick to the 3-5 tools listed in part two and have a process in place to narrow down your list and you will be good to go.

Part 3: Enlist an Advocate

Now parts one and two may sound all well and good, but if you are a busy founder balancing ‘a stack of hats’, cleaning up your messaging and researching the right tools may not be high on your priority list (even though they need to be). Do yourself a favor and set yourself and your organization up for marketing success. Enlist an advocate to keep the shiny objects prioritized.

A right fit outsourced marketing advocate is more than just a consultant and can be immensely helpful for early-stage startups when founders 'wear a lot of hats' and marketing can be a huge distraction. An advocate is an extension of your team and has the companies best interest in mind at all times as they make decisions, including what needs to get worked on and when.

The right outsourced marketing advocate will:

  1. Free up your time so you can focus on areas of higher priority for the business.

  2. Remain objective while making recommendations that best serve your company and keep your marketing on task.

  3. Help clean up your messaging.

  4. Find the tools you need to keep your marketing effective and efficient.

  5. Help prioritize projects with appropriate strategies that keep internal marketing teams and founders happy while getting results.

Get comfortable but not too comfortable with distraction

Let’s face it wearing multiple hats and warding off distraction is part of startup culture. However, this does not mean shiny object syndrome has to be alive and kicking in your organization. Recognizing that too much distraction is not a good thing will help your marketing stay on task with the goal of producing quality, not quantity. Clean up your messaging, get tools to keep you running smoothly, and find an advocate when you need it. It’s really that simple.

Anne Laffin is the founder of Fin Marketing Management. She created this consultancy out of her experience watching startups try to navigate marketing during their foundational years. She understands the hazards of suffering from shiny object syndrome and created a solution that keeps you focused and effective.

Want to learn more about how Fin can help with your startup marketing needs? Schedule a free consultation today.


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