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The most important principle for early-stage marketing? Other people’s audiences.

Let’s start from the very foundation. Marketing is communication. Communication doesn’t exist without an audience. So marketing needs an audience.

In the beginning, when you start something new, you don’t have an audience yet (but your marketing needs it). So you have two options:

  1. Create the audience from scratch (takes a long time)
  2. Borrow an existing audience (takes a short time)

Clearly, we want to do both, but most people only do #1. They create an Instagram or Twitter page and spend all their time on that. They are basically screaming to the void, then eventually quit because they don’t see results.

It’s like making friends in a bar. If you’re just waiting for someone to come, you’ll wait a long time. But if you go to a group and introduce yourself, maybe buy them drinks, that’s it.

So especially early-stage marketing is about finding and using other people’s audiences.

The way to grow on Twitter initially? Reply to big accounts’ tweets.

The way to get sales on a new product? Promo on places where you are exposed to other people’s audiences, like Product Hunt and Reddit.

Want more email subscribers? Sponsor a related newsletter.

If you look at marketing closely, you’ll see that it nearly always starts from asking where the audience already is. Ads, sponsorships, influencer marketing, referral programmes, PR… There are all kinds of paid ways to use someone else’s audience.

But a creative person can use other people’s audiences for free.

Understand this principle of other people’s audiences and your early-stage marketing should become a bit easier.


Wanted to post this cause I’ve been thinking about the fundamental principles underlying marketing strategies and tactics. Actually, thought about it for a year and condensed what I discovered into this workshop:

https://jaakkoj.gumroad.com/l/marketingprinciples

Anyway, your thoughts on the post? If you entertained this idea, how could this info help in your own marketing?

Thanks for reading.

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