Since as far back as anyone can remember, African startups and Small scale businesses have always faced one major problem – funding. Now, while many people are aware that many of these companies struggle to raise tens of thousands and even millions in sponsorships, not many people realize that even small sums in the range of $100 to $500 needed for online advertising can be a real problem.
Now, while traditional advertising can be often ignored by entrepreneurs, online advertising on huge platforms and channels such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Google cannot be overemphasized. Think about the thousands of Shopify stores on the internet; the thousands of Clickfunnels accounts which have been used to create and automate sales; and the thousands of businesses built on Thinkific, Teachable and their kind.
Without social media and Google ads, there will be far less internet marketing millionaires than we currently have and more importantly, sales will be way too little and far in-between as most people would be forced to stick to content marketing, influencer marketing and other slower costlier options.
But instant social media ads eliminate these nightmarish outcomes.
GrowthBond and Its Growth Hack
Good digital advertising is the answer and GrowthBond knows that. But ads can be expensive for starters and they know this too. This is because beyond conceptualizing a good ad blueprint, businesses somehow have to create a budget for their initial ad campaign – and this is where funding usually comes in.
This Danish startup is doing what a ton of other financing companies have been doing for a long time now – helping businesses with loans at a marginal cost. However, the team seem to be adopting an interesting approach to ad funding.
First, it targets African startups which are by far the most underfunded in the world. Interestingly enough, not many of these startups need a ton of money to get off the ground. As Ferdinand Kjærulff, founder of GrowthBond writes on Medium, Facebook has long evolved from a photo sharing platform to a marketplace for millions of Africans. He did mention that almost anything – from shoes to cars – are now publicly available for sale and purchase on Facebook.
So What’s Their Plan?
The company opens its portal to any and every business in Africa that is in dire need of advertisement funding. The emphasis is not on funding the entire business but their ads budget. This means that the businesses Growthbond is looking for are the ones that are already in operation or perhaps making some money but really need some help with landing more sales, customers and patrons through advertising.
Interestingly enough, this demography covers most of the businesses on the continent. At the moment. Over 6,700 African companies have applied for micro advertising funding already. GrowthBond also say some 1,700 professionals have also take courses on digital and internet marketing on their platform. With these milestones and metrics, it is safe to assume the company is headed in the right direction in the continent and hopefully beyond. The 900+ businesses they have funded with advertisement budget so far are a testament to this.
But then, the company is just getting started in Africa. How will they deal with competition? How will they make their money back? And what does the future hold for them in a continent that has a huge evolving economy? Their CEO has agreed to share more in an upcoming interview alongside success stories of businesses GrowthBond has recently funded.