This is the second in a series of blogs that will examine the needs of startups in St. Petersburg, focusing on the various services they may need, as well as available resources and community leaders who are here to help!
You’ve got your business set up and you’re almost ready launch. Still, you feel like your marketing could use some refining and you’re not confident that you have the right tools and strategies in place. This means creating a solid marketing plan, but where do you find the right help, sound advice, and constructive feedback you will need to make sure your marketing helps you stand out from your competition?
Networking, of course! You will be surprised at the number of valuable connections that can be made locally just by attending networking events or reaching out to groups of like-minded business people who want to see the community succeed. In this blog, we will take a look at some of the networking circles you should take advantage of in the Tampa Bay area.
Every business community has gatherings like Young Professional Happy Hours and Entrepreneur Social Club events that bring together professionals from across industries to mix and mingle. Quite often you can find many quality contacts who would be more than happy to lend a helping hand or friendly advice to a determined startup. There are also breakfast lecture series and presentations specifically for women in business or other more defined groups of entrepreneurs. No matter what your specific needs or challenges are as a startup, there is likely a group out there that can address them.
Many of these events are free, making it all the easier to attend as many as your schedule allows. It couldn’t be easier to meet a variety of new contacts, find help with your business needs, and spread the word about your launch! Sometimes all it takes are boots on the ground and putting in the time in order to gain immediate traction.
Startup Specific Groups
Also be on the lookout for groups who are specifically there for startups. One easy place to connect is your local Chamber of Commerce. In St. Petersburg, and in many other cities, an organization called The Greenhouse oversees a weekly meeting of 1 Million Cups, which is a free program designed to educate, engage and inspire entrepreneurs, empowering them with the tools needed to find success. This program was founded in 2012 and is now active in over 180 communities. We have attended a number of these morning meetings and have found them to be ripe with ideas, help, and valuable support for the local community. They are also a great place to learn about what services and tools other local startups have found success using.
When Do You Say When?
Attending all of these events can be exhausting, so you may be wondering when exactly you should stop going after your business is up and running. Well, that is up to you and the needs of your business, but even after you are turning a profit, it might be worth it to pay it forward! Certainly you wouldn’t need to attend all the events you once did, but keeping your hand in play to further your reputation doesn’t hurt, and think of the help and inspiration you could be to the next young entrepreneur you meet. Networking never truly stops, so keep on keeping on!
If you are a startup in St. Pete or in the surrounding Tampa Bay area, and you need a tech partner, contact Blink;Tech today. Specializing in website design, web engineering, digital marketing, and more, we’ve helped visions just like yours come to life on the web and we are here to help you.
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The Blink;Tech Team