Starting up and growing a business in an industry as competitive as adtech can be a challenging process.
The importance of a solid network of contacts and advisors you can trust cannot be underestimated. Below we take a look at three key areas for start-ups and the creation of an exciting new programme for start-ups.
How do I … grow my network?
Even when you have co-founders, it is important to grow and maintain a network both in the adtech industry and the wider start-up community. Having a strong network will give you people to bounce ideas off of, access to talent when you decide to grow, and will open the door to opportunities you may not have come across otherwise. Attending events and investing time in relationships can seem time consuming but can lead you to meet all sorts of interesting people and in reality is the pathway to investors.
How do I … get my name out there?
In the early stages of your business, getting your name out there can be a burden. Unless you have the backing of major investors, you need to be savvy in your PR and promotion. For many start-ups, word of mouth marketing is key and partnerships can help you to reach new audiences. Working on events with partners who have established networks in these areas can be particularly effective – consider speaking on “hot topics” in the industry rather than simply sales presentations; positioning yourself as understanding the concerns of clients and the industry as a whole can be a particularly effective marketing tool.
How do I … adapt to change?
In a market moving as quickly as adtech, it is vital to react to change swiftly and effectively – allowing your product and strategy to evolve so that it stays current and ahead of the competition. To do this, you need to have insight into the market itself; spotting trends before your competitors. Linking back to growing your network, making sure you are having conversations with the right influencers in the marketplace is vital to understanding any new direction the market may be taking together with the key issues likely to invoke pivot points which you will need to react to. Realising that your original product dream is less relevant than when originally conceived can be disheartening – however, the key to a successful start-up is to embrace the change and work to generate an even better product.
Help is at hand
Most founders know all about the above but might not necessarily think of a law firm as a starting point to achieve these goals. However, Olswang has recently launched a programme for start-ups called Olswang equIP, which provides founders of high growth businesses with discounted legal advice, invitations to exclusive events and training, and access to Olswang’s network of investors, advisors and other founders. The programme places an emphasis on introducing members to each other, and to other Olswang contacts through events, training and personal introductions.
In addition start-ups should not underestimate the power of getting on top of legal issues. Many adtech businesses, when they start out, don’t see the need for expert legal advice; however, customers want to know that they are working with a team that is professional and compliant and investors want to invest in businesses which they have confidence are run properly and have minimal legal concerns and lower financial risk.
We will be looking more at some top legal tips here on the #GettingStarted column next but given that adtech sits in an area where data protection and privacy is extremely important, getting some of these legal intricacies wrong can cost you your business. Intellectual property will also be a key consideration for adtech businesses. In order to protect your brand name and your unique technology, IP should be high on the agenda, not an afterthought. Many adtech businesses start as a group of people with a bright idea. These legal considerations have the capacity to accelerate your growth and influence in the market.
Whatever your strategy, equIP members are welcomed and encouraged to use Olswang’s resources to increase the reach of their marketing. For adtech businesses, that could mean producing content for ADTEKR, speaking at our next Adtech Stars event or taking over our ADTEKR Twitter account for a day!
As one of the only law firms with a true, dedicated adtech practice, Olswang’s new programme for start-ups should be an exciting prospect for those in the industry. For more information on the Olswang equIP Programme, visit the webpage. If you have any questions, please contact us on equIP@olswang.com.