“A startup is a company working to solve a problem where the solution is not obvious and success is not guaranteed” — Neil Blumenthal, Warby Parker Co-Founder.
Startups are nothing like the traditional established companies. With different and ever-evolving strategies employed by the highly enthusiastic; usually scarce number of employees, dealing with startups might be quite a challenge. As a matter-of-fact, startups do not possess every human resource they need in-house. Therefore, they opt for agencies to get their works done. This has seen a massive boom in agencies- both small and large, working with startups from around the world. As mentioned earlier, a startup is nothing like your typical company, hence, there surely are some differences. These differences will come out to become exciting challenges if the agencies are ready to take them.
Startups are trying to find their way into making it big in the ever-growing market arena. Unlike big companies, startups do not have a fixed set of marketing strategies rather they are always changing. Apparently, the marketing head of the startup you are dealing with might turn out to be a fresh graduate. So, you should expect some fluctuations.
The initial phases for a startup are marked up by significant changes in the work plan and business strategies. Plans might change due to anything from customer reviews to some new-found desire to experiment. This might require you to bring changes in the features of your services. So, be patient and ready for it.
Startups are built on a foundation of aspirations and hopes of ruling the particular market someday. One thing to be cautious of is; startups and their owners all fall under the vulnerable lot. While bigger companies choose to go-on after a significant loss, a substantial number of startups shut down within their first year due to the same reason.
Agencies dealing with startups should always be extremely aware of this. It is necessary to commit what is achievable; overselling will only discourage startups. Overselling will certainly harm your partnership and furthermore, it might be the reason why that startup chooses to shut down.
Agencies working with startups should stress the need for better communication. It might be easier with bigger companies; most have set procedures for everything and with their overwhelming manpower, human resources are specifically employed for this purpose. This is not the case with startups. And their already unstable states make them deem for better communications and sometimes more than what is needed. Also, you might end up having to communicate with many people from the same company and even repeating the same thing. If agencies want to become the right one for startups then it is necessary that they understand that startups are in their growing phase and they will have to help them with their growth. It will never work if agencies show impatience in this regard.
One of the fundamental principles of startups is to get the most work done by the minimum possible manpower. This demands agencies to be flexible in terms of the services they provide. With startups, it shouldn’t be like ‘I’ll do this and not a thing more.’ If agencies want to be a success for startups then they should rather work towards building a rather friendly relation. It is better not to expect over-the-top professionalism with startups because chances are, you might find only a workable amount of professionalism. So, the agencies’ approach should be more humanly and this comes with being helpful. You might find yourself suggesting them on renovating the interiors of their office and being of some help in matters that do not relate to your work and not be paid. But then, small favors shouldn’t be weighed in terms of money, should they? This will surely build your credibility!
Startups are quite complex to work with if agencies continue to stick to their rigid work-policy. But the booming number of startups is fairly a persuasive reason to start working with them and even try and be successful. Working with startups needs a significant amount of patience and flexibility. And if you achieve these, you are set to become a successful agency for startups.