The No Marketing Plan!

I hate budgets.

I hate plans.

Most of all, I hate marketing plans!

So, let me tell you about Brandon: he is one of the principals of an interesting Angel Investing firm-with-a-twist. On his company’s blog, Brandon offers some of the best advice for testing your new business idea that I have ever read.

Not only that – like all GREAT ideas – it’s simplicity in itself … here’s what Brandon says:

Let me sum this up in one sentence:
As a startup or new business, the amount of time you spend writing up a sexy business plan to pitch investors would be better spent running a $500 PPC campaign testing your idea.

[Note: PPC = Pay Per Click online advertising]

You are lucky enough to live in a world with Google Adwords.  This is a good thing.  The costs of launching a new business online are hastily reducing to zero.  Testing a business idea or even a half-baked, half-assed business-sorta idea, is easy.  So do it.

Stop thinking about writing a business plan (that you mostly copy of some web template – be honest), and start here:

1. Register a domain name.  Doesn’t have to be good.  Starting a bird feeder biz?  Get
2. Get hosting, install the CMS [e.g. WordPress or Blogger] of your choice.
3. Make 3-4 landing pages.  Ask questions.  Find out some key answers to the market you are hoping to serve with your genius new idea.  Offer to sell your service right now.
4. Setup [a Google] Adwords campaign and spend $500.
5. Read the answers you get.  Scour the analytics, the keywords and clicks.  Any sale or response is good.  Email your new ‘customers’ and find out more about them.

The point is, this is so easy and cheap to do, you should do it.  There’s no risk in doing so, and the upside is possibly priceless.

It could save you from wasting 9 months of your life chasing a bad idea.  It could teach you what people really want, not what you think they want.  It makes you get serious.


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12 thoughts on “The No Marketing Plan!

  1. sounds like we both read the same book on the weekend. how good are you at programming forms and sh*t or setting up shopping carts and customer databases. I need help with this stuff!

  2. Adrian, thanks for the great write up! In the interest of full disclosure, that post was written by my partner Nathaniel but I’m on the same page with him on this. Just want to give credit where it’s due!

  3. @ Brandon – In that case, Nathaniel is brilliant and you – and, now I – are just hanging in his grand shadow 😛

  4. ill liquidity,

    Depending on the size and depth of the site you are trying to create WordPress can be used FOR FREE again keeping costs low.

  5. Brandon,

    Your site comes up as porn for my work’s blocker….I think it may be the word “growth” lol

  6. Hmmm what does he mean with the “ask questions” part exactly?

    Does he mean just sending the Adwords traffic to a landing page where the user can answer questions?

    And why would anyone answer these questions? What do you give your visitors in return?


  7. I agree that you dont need to spend 500 bucks on a plan. I disagree that you dont need a plan because without a plan how will you know you’ve reached your goals?

    Anyway if you’ve got a buck you can create your next plan at

    But only if you need a roadmap to get ahead.

    Sandy Barris
    [marketing spiel removed]

  8. @ Sandy – LOL. Normally, I remove these types of links: since even I’M not allowed to advertise or promote my products on this blog, why should anybody else?

    However, I have checked out your site and it’s innovative and useful … in fact, I would LOVE to see you expand this concept to include FastBusinessPlans.

    Now, back to the topic at hand: what Nathaniel is suggesting is that you don’t need to do multi-page written documents until you have tested the market.

    I agree. In fact, once you test the market and get the feedback that you need you’ll be in a position to decide the BUDGET that you can afford, e.g. for marketing … which is where your EXCELLENT tool then comes in 😉

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