The connection between funding and marketing of a tech start up (or a new project in an existing company) is not limited to the obvious one of doing the required market study for your business plan.
It’s all about how you look at it
One of the best ways to understand the relationship between funding and marketing/sales is to look at it from the other person’s perspective.
Funding a new venture, from the investor/lender point of view, is about getting the best returns for the least amount of risk.
Returns and risks
The best way to prove that your company/project will yield high returns is to show that you can sell your products/services. Hence past and current sales, as well as a sales funnel, will do miracles to convince your investors/lenders that your company is worth investing in. It will also reassure lenders on one of the major risks: your commercialisation capabilities.
This all sounds interesting but I’m sure you’re asking yourself – How am I suppose to sell products/services that I can only get to market once I have funding before I get my funding?
Re-thinking your business and marketing strategy from the outset
This is where a solid business and marketing strategy come in. If you know that funding is essential for your project, and getting it won’t be a walk in the park, your initial strategy will need to enable your business to sell something (as close as possible to your final product/services) before going to investors. This can take the form of a very basic version of your product/service, a pilot project, pre-orders or other.
Who has time for this?
Aside from gathering golden information on all aspects of your business and market during your pilot project, which will save you time and resources, the real question to ask yourself should be the following.
Do I really have the time to work day and night to start a business only to have to abandon my project after a year or two because I can’t get any funding?