Stand Out By Leveraging Existing Platforms

Neon sign that says #tweettweet

The term “platform” returns a surprising number of definitions. In marketing, it can refer to social media, podcasting, video, web, and more. The traction channel “Existing Platforms” alludes to how startups can leverage traction by integrating with platforms that already have a massive following.

The short explanation of this channel is that startups should represent their business on these platforms to get their content in front of existing audiences and be able to identify their ideal audience with better precision. The following is already on the platform. Take advantage of that pool and explore integrations with platforms that make the most sense with your business. This article highlights the platforms your startup should consider leveraging marketing efforts on.

Social Media Platforms

The History of Social Media Platforms

As of 2019, it is estimated that 3.5 billion people are online. When you compare that number to the total world population of 7.7 billion, it has quite an impact. Breaking that figure down more, studies have estimated that two-thirds of internet users are on social media. For those of us who can remember the early 2000s, the world first saw social media make its presence known in the form of MySpace. What started small in the early 2000s but rapidly grew created an explosion of new opportunities in marketing. 

While MySpace paved the initial pathway of social media, it was the introduction of Facebook to the general population that sparked immense growth in this industry. Originally available only to college students, Facebook allowed users to connect via digital space and share content with one another in a new way. Today, Facebook is a must-have platform for businesses to advertise on. In 2019, there are a reported 6 million businesses that have their own Facebook business page. With 74% of Facebook users checking in daily, there are minimal cons to integrating with this platform.


Staying Ahead of the Competition

However, startups should consider the stage of a lifetime the existing platforms are in. To really gain traction, Businesses only marketing on Facebook will not succeed. The ones who identified and were first to adopt new platforms are the ones who see massive growth. Early adopters are those who are early users of new technologies, products/services, or platforms before the majority of the population catches on. 

With this in mind, keep updated on growing platforms. The earlier your business integrates, the more you can stand out. Just keep in mind who your audience is and whether the platform makes the most sense. A business whose target market is restricted to an older demographic might not want to consider TikTok, a short-form mobile video sharing platform popular with a more tech-depended demographic.

App Platforms

Additional existing platforms to consider are app-focused. App stores like Apple and Android allow businesses access to an impressive pool of potential users. If your business has an app, consider the free strategy: feature a free version of your app to increase the number of users, then monetize those free users with in-app purchases or paid upgrade to a premium version. It’s important to get your app to appear somewhere on the charts, so push for users to share ratings of their experience.

Web or App Extensions

Another example of integrating with existing platforms is through web or app extensions. With web browsers, such as Chrome or Firefox, users can improve their browsing experience by downloading extensions. Usually free, these extensions create a direct portal to a business. Plus, they provide some kind of value to the user as a means of personalizing their browsing experience.


Grammarly is a free browser extension that analyzes in real-time your text to correct grammatical mistakes, provide clear messaging, and improve the quality of messages. It’s a built-in spell checker useful for all messages that are created within a web browser. Grammarly gains a lot from this extension. It receives access to the web browser’s existing audience, provides a useful feature, and drives users to its services, which include premium services.


Slack, a cloud-based instant messaging platform popular with organizations, features a similar type of method with its app extensions. Allowing for seamless integration with services such as Zoom, Google Drive and Obie, Slack has created an opportunity for businesses to tap into its existing user pool in a simple and easy way. An app extension with Slack is perfect for services that seek to make collaboration between teams easier.

With so many platforms existing to take advantage of, what are you waiting for? Take the time to research trending social media or brainstorm how to convert your services to a value-added tool. Finding the right platform can be time-consuming. But once tapped in, you won’t regret the time invested to continue gaining traction.

Check out this video to learn more about existing platforms.

Want more traction channel tips? Follow our YouTube channel and listen to our Cutting Through The Noise podcast for more content on these topics!

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Business Development: Finding the Right Partner

Small toys shaking hands.


The phrase “business development” can be intimidating. After all, it sounds like something only big corporations dabble in. Thoughts of power lunches in power suits come to mind. But just because you don’t have an arsenal of sales executives and vice presidents doesn’t mean you can’t develop your business in a rewarding way. That is, after all, the definition!


Clothing Business

Know Your Goal

Let’s use the example of a fictional clothing company named Threaded. They sell online and have a storefront in their Texas town. In recent years Threaded has experienced the same pain point as other retailers: a drop in foot traffic. Digital marketing efforts keep the e-commerce business on fire but have yet to get people in the store.

The owners task their marketing agency with increasing store visits followed by setting a revenue growth goal. There are multiple traction channels in play: unconventional PR, outside advertising and viral marketing. But they decided on seeking local partnerships. Enter the business development traction channel. And a few baseball teams.

A Standard Partnership

This form of business development is as simple as it sounds. In practice, two entities work together to reach an established goal. Ideally, the partnership is to the benefit of both parties. The important piece is that each partner brings something to the table the other can’t execute on by themselves.

Athletic wear, including shirts and jerseys, compromises a huge piece of the Threaded bottom line. They also believe in community first business. Combining these two things leads them to a partnership with the town’s Little League.


Baseball Game


Threaded designs and produces shirts for each of the six teams. Each has different graphics and colors, but the consistent piece is the prominent Threaded logo. The unique value each partner brings to the table? The Little League gets free shirts they badly need and Threaded gets brand awareness on the backs of a hundred kids and coaches. They also get billboards in the various parks.

Is That Really Developing Business?

Of course! A common outcome of strategic business development is brand awareness. While this is a byproduct of traction channels like advertising, this is organic. And aside from production costs, free. Every time those Little Leaguers take the field parents and friends see the Threaded logo. Pizza parties after the games? Same. It’s the repetition that leads a person on main street pop into the store when they recognize the logo.

As we often talk about successful execution in one traction channel can lead to success in other channels. In this case, there are two examples. Specifically, since Threaded is giving the shirts to the league for free they are getting good press. From mentions in the newspaper to general word of mouth, they are benefiting from the traction channel PR. Without any additional effort! Additionally, images of the kids wearing the shirts start popping up on Instagram and Facebook, both from the players and parents. All of a sudden people not at the game are seeing the branding.

When pursuing a standard partnership as your way of developing business both sides must win. In this case, success.


College Football Stadium

Licensed to Sell

Threaded is in a unique position that it has multiple avenues to execute strategic business development. This second example is equally as effective and somewhat the opposite of the Little League venture.

Sticking with their athletic wear trend, Threaded decides to license the name and art rights for Texas A&M. In this case, you have one company – a university – who has a recognizable brand but wants it seen wider. You have another company – threaded – who designs amazing products but needs a recognizable brand to attract eyeballs. And thus sales.

Both the school and Threaded get free advertising out of this partnership. People are advertising the school just by wearing the shirts and hats. Threaded starts becoming the college’s “brand” and it’s hard to go to a football stadium or music festival without being flooded with their products.

Winners all around again!

If you’d like to learn more about the business development traction, specifically how to validate efforts through data, check out this video. You can also subscribe to our YouTube channel for additional videos and listen to our podcast for even more content!