When do you start marketing even an unfinished product?

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From a very helpful recent conversation: “If people aren’t going to your site or signing up for your newsletter, isn’t that something you want to know now?

I stopped by Skillcrush’s offices to talk to Adda Birnir (co-founder and former Tow-Knight fellow). It’s always helpful to hear about the experiences of others, and it pushed me to make more concerted effort to figure out how to market my site and drive traffic to it. My hesitancy (and kind of pathetic efforts to do so thus far) I think came from getting caught up in trying to perfect certain details and uncertainties, and worrying about showing a product that’s not ready too early. (Adda also had a helpful response to that: “You’re going to have to get over that.”)

The thing about start-up culture–as opposed to some traditional media outlets or other industries–is that sometimes you have to market/promote a product that’s still at a very early stage of conceptualization. And during the process of marketing, you learn things that help shape the ultimate product so that it fits the audience’s needs better.

It’s a different kind of process compared to content strategy/development, but I like that it forces me out of my comfort zone, and I think it will be interesting to see how different approaches work. And it’s true: If what I’m putting out isn’t something that has traction, better to know that sooner rather than later. And then make adjustments and try again.

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