You could be forgiven for thinking it’s all doom and gloom for the UK these days. With the headlines dominated by Brexit and all the political chaos that goes with it, it’s hard to imagine that the UK in general and London, in particular, could be the target for any promising startup looking to expand its footprint. Yet the UK remains one of the most exciting and promising European startup cities. In fact, London still holds the mantle of Europe’s tech capital in funding terms – and Brexit is not making as much of a dent as might be expected.
This was the topic we explored in our latest SCALEup event, which focused on how European startups can boost their UK marketing, even in these times of uncertainty. We provided attendees with top tips and insights for a successful launch in the UK, focusing on why London should be part of any ambitious UK growth plan, Brexit or not.
Tips for boosting your UK marketing in these uncertain times
The intro session, hosted by Sam Phillips, Client Service Lead in the UK, revealed why London was still the place to be for any emerging digital, disruptive or tech brand, even at this turning point in British history. Her talk touched on the progressive nature of London’s approach to digital and offline marketing and explored why the city remains the perfect testing ground for brands who want to learn fast and grow quickly.
The evening also included a deep dive into Vivien Bresson’s experience as Head of Marketing for the newly launched Franksmile. With some very recent and valuable experience, Vivien gave advice for companies that are about to conquer one of the world’s most competitive and most valuable markets.
Here are some key takeaways from each of the evening’s two sections which we hope will help you on your own path to success in the UK.
Samantha Phillips – Client Services Lead, DCMN London
Three words: keep it local. Localisation is key to succeeding in this highly competitive market. This means understanding not only the nuances between your current territories and the UK, but also the regional nuances within the UK itself. What might have worked in one market, won’t necessarily work in a new market, so a copy and paste, cookie-cutter approach isn’t advised. For such a small country, the UK has a kaleidoscope of differentiating factors which you should consider carefully as part of your go-to-market strategy.
Before you start, really analyse all aspects, from regional differences within channel offerings, price indexing, target audience, tonality, accents and content type for creatives and so on – the list goes on. DCMN uses a fail-safe test, learn and scale approach, which companies can apply to campaigns throughout the funnel.
Building your understanding of what resonates with your new audience in this new territory through a test, learn, scale approach will ensure minimal wastage and data-driven insights for continued success.
Vivien Bresson – Head of Marketing, Franksmile
Localisation has been key for Franksmile since starting their journey in the UK. Their regional testing approach helped them quickly and efficiently gain a better understanding of the nuances within the market. Most notably, this meant understanding the pros and cons and cost vs reach between Manchester and London, two of their focal cities within their initial growth stage.
Vivien explained how testing creation and copy led to some interesting learnings, with emphasis on the importance of creating a tonally and visually friendly brand, which leans heavily on emotional connection. This emotional connection is an important factor for any marketer working within the UK.
Vivien also praised the UK as an excellent and advanced testing ground. ‘The UK is like the sandbox for advertising. The UK people are more receptive to advertising and they are early adopters, kind of like your beta testers of Europe,” she says.