The Story Behind SmartStart
Every entrepreneur deserves a shot at success. It shouldn’t matter who you know, or how well-capitalized your company is coming out of the gate. But there’s always been a huge gap separating “professional” marketing efforts and “affordable” marketing efforts. We created SmartStart specifically to deliver both.
SmartStart is the result of a perfect storm; the confluence of divergent influences: Friendship, Mentoring, Revelation, and then, of course, the Pandemic.
As 2020 began, I heard essentially the same question from three different friends. It was a question I’d been asked before, and one that I was never comfortable answering. “Steve, can you help my business get a simple one-page website online?” I genuinely believe that people who ask this question assume it’s not going to be a big deal. Simple, right? Easy, right? Wrong.
It’s never any fun telling your friends, “I don’t think you can afford us.”
I’m humbled to have been a mentor at the Nashville Entrepreneur Center since 2015. During that time, I have mentored well over 100 individual companies. For most of them, I feel I added real value. For a few, I’d like to believe my positive impact was substantial.
Throughout the course of all these mentoring sessions, another related question emerged: “What does a basic start-up marketing program cost?”
“It depends,” never feels like a satisfying response, even if it’s the right answer.
The words, simple and basic, are highly charged. On the surface, they imply minimal, nothing fancy. Sometimes the entrepreneur even admits to seeing the results of this effort as a place saver – something to be wholly replaced at some future point when more time and money are available. Invariably, the words imply inexpensive.
Ironically, the word “value” is rarely mentioned. Because without a doubt, value is the single most important criterion for any marketing program.
Then one day, it dawned on me: my assumption that small and early-stage businesses can’t afford or are unwilling to pay for professional marketing services was flawed. The real issue was my own inability to effectively convey the value of a comprehensive marketing approach. I didn’t have ready answers, because I hadn’t invested nearly enough resources into addressing the most essential marketing needs of startups: measurable results achieved with predictable costs.
Enter The Pandemic.
So rolling into the early days of the Pandemic, knowing that a lot of top-flight talent suddenly had extra time on their hands, I decided to make that investment. I challenged our team to create the ultimate marketing platform for companies who want to do it right the first time. And a just few months later, we were ready for rollout.
We offer SmartStart marketing packages at several price points, but all are guided by the same philosophy: any effort expended early in a company’s growth-curve should, by definition, be scalable as growth and success occur. We also believe that chances of growth and success increase when those early efforts are executed at the highest professional standards.
A Startup Can’t Afford To Hire A Startup Agency
Which brings me to one more crucial point. It seems most startups feel they have no choice but to rely on junior-level talent. Obviously, they can’t afford to retain a top agency. So they naturally assume they can’t afford the high-level expertise that makes great agencies great. And for the most part, the people who operate under this assumption have been right.
SmartStart changes all that. Yes, as a SmartStart client, you will get a great website. Along with sophisticated sales and marketing automation, email integration, and more. But you’re also plugging into the collective brainpower of a proven all-star team. Their expertise, experience, and real-world knowledge are already baked into everything we provide you.
And if you need something above and beyond? A logo redesign perhaps, a customer acquisition strategy, or maybe even a complete brand refresh? Now you won’t have to go searching for high-level talent, fingers crossed that somehow you’ll find the right people for the job. Because we already have those people on our team. And as a part of the Mojo family, so do you. A simple recipe, but a powerful one. Less risk. More results. Better outcomes.
It’s almost an unfair advantage. Almost.