Four Startup Challenges that Technology Can Help Solve

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internal wikis to capture FAQs and best practices, and reference information.

An important part of collaborative innovation is creating a repository of ideas. Dropbox is popular, as it provides a centralized location for teams to store, share, and access files anytime and anywhere.

Get Your Brand Noticed

When MetricStream was launching GRCIntelligence.com, we needed a logo. So we turned to 99designs, a large online graphic design marketplace that connects designers with customers. For $299, we launched a logo design contest, received over 100 entries, and picked our logo.

But getting your brand noticed takes more than a logo.

Many people are talking about the Dollar Shave Club—a startup that shot to fame after the company’s funny YouTube video went viral. The video, which cost just $4,500 to make, has already been viewed over ten million times. What a way to get your brand noticed!

Videos are a great tool to create lasting impression on customers. And if you don’t have the budget for a professional videographer, a handheld camera will work just fine.

There are many other cool and cost-effective marketing tools. Want to create a company website? Opt for WordPress—it’s free, and offers thousands of plugins and themes. Want to begin conversations around your brand? Build a Facebook or Twitter presence. Want to know who’s discussing your company or industry? Explore Google Trends or Alerts.

To develop a good website SEO strategy, choose from tools like Google’s Keyword Tool to check for monthly search volumes, Raven Tools or Majestic SEO for research analysis and link-building, and SEOMoz (now known as Moz) to track keyword rankings and links.

And at the end of the day, don’t forget to measure the effectiveness of your marketing strategies. Google Analytics is good at helping you calculate sales and conversions, and determine ways to keep your customers coming back to your site.

Conclusion

Putting together the right toolkit for your startup is important to get your business up and running. But first, take the time to properly define and prioritize your business strategies and goals. This will help you zero in on the tools and systems you need and don’t need. For instance, you might not really need the cloud. So be clear about what you want. Do the research. Be realistic about your budgets. And if you find something that works, stick with it.

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Shellye Archambeau is CEO of MetricStream, a Palo Alto, CA-based company offering governance, risk, compliance, and quality management solutions to enterprises in the pharmaceutical, medical device, high tech manufacturing, energy, financial services, healthcare, manufacturing, food and beverage, and automotive industries. Follow @metricstream

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