Marketing front and centre for young entrepreneurs

It was rewarding to see tomorrow's business minds in full swing

Aptus, one of the winning teams that will go on to the regional finals

After judging the teams at the Young Enterprise Awards this week, it got me thinking about how marketing is such an integral part of business. Okay it’s not the ‘be-all and end-all’ but it can be the difference between a successful or struggling organisation.

While these Young Enterprise ‘companies’ were learning the basic business ropes in a relatively risk-free environment, it offered up valuable lessons that could be adopted by start-ups (and some mature companies too!).

A smart marketing strategy was evident in both successful teams that were selected to go through to the next stage of Young Enterprise. Can that just be a coincidence?

Getting back to marketing basics is sometimes a good idea and both teams had carefully considered the:

  • Product
  • Place
  • Price
  • Promotion
  • People
  • Processes

I think it’s fantastic that Young Enterprise is harnessing young entrepreneurs early, while they’re still in full time education. But for more mature folks, one has to ask – what’s going wrong? Is there a lack of quality, experienced support? Is there a lack of communication about the support available? Or is there a lack of willingness from businesses to learn and take the support?

What would it be like if everyone who was seriously considering starting a business in the UK was coached in these basics, and had help formulating a business plan. Perhaps we could improve upon the current environment where around 20% of new UK businesses fail in their first year and 50% don’t last 3 years.

Well done to Young Enterprise, and the schools involved, for placing marketing at the core of their process!

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