Power your sales and marketing with non-dilutive finance

September 4, 2023
Power your sales and marketing with non-dilutive finance

If you’re looking to secure the additional capital you need to grow your business, there are two important questions you need to ask—where are you going to get it? And, how are you going to spend it? While venture capital (VC) or equity finance can give you access to large sums of capital, there is often pressure to meet high expectations of ROI and the risk of losing control of your company. Non-dilutive finance however allows businesses to access capital with flexible terms and fuel growth while retaining ownership. It also provides a unique opportunity to focus spending on where it matters—generating real sales growth!

The temptation to plough funding back into product research, hiring more engineers, or expanding into new markets is understandable—after all, product and technology are central to achieving business goals. But building great solutions means little without effectively communicating its value to potential customers.

Too often, start-ups underestimate how long it takes to engage target audiences and change long-standing buying behaviours. Building awareness and early customer validation requires sustained investment beyond just the initial bootstrapping phase. So before expanding product lines or office space, let's explore the different ways you can power your sales and marketing initiatives to achieve sustainable growth with non-dilutive finance.

Jump start digital advertising

Getting your product and business name in front of target audiences is no easy task and requires heavy investment in online promotions. With a well-funded marketing campaign, you can start to invest in various channels such as social media advertising, content creation strategies, search engine optimisation, and influencer marketing. These initiatives can increase brand awareness, drive traffic to your website, and ultimately generate more sales opportunities.

Boosted budgets for digital campaigns paired with technical optimisation can help lower customer acquisition costs over time, capture market share before competitors and accelerate your sales pipeline, using the additional revenue to repay the non-dilutive funding.  to secure revenue-based loan repayments.  

Use case: An AI start-up secures $100k in non-dilutive funding to ramp up their digital presence. They launch Facebook and Instagram ads targeting tech companies, develop educational blogs and whitepapers, use SEO strategies, and engage industry influencers. Within six months, their website traffic increases 3x and trials go up 50% — this validates commercial demand for their product. These marketing efforts accelerate the sales process, allowing them to sign their next first five paying enterprise customers. The recurring revenue enables timely loan repayments over 12 months while retaining full ownership of the company.

Establish brand identity and assets

First impressions are everything in the world of business, and a strong brand can be your biggest asset. However, developing a thoughtful and compelling brand takes time and investment. Non-dilutive finance provides capital to invest in a branding agency to audit your current positioning and craft an engaging brand narrative and visual identity that clearly resonates with your target customers.

Producing high-quality marketing collateral like brochures, videos, infographics and branded merchandise improves brand recall and depth of engagement at industry events. A strong brand image and premium assets also help you stand out in a crowded market.

Use case: A SaaS company in the health tech industry raises $150k in non-dilutive finance to revamp their brand strategy. They engage an agency to refine their messaging to focus on accessibility. A new logo, website and promotional videos highlighting patient stories increases booth traffic at a major conference by 50%. Within eight months, partnership leads convert 5x higher and the improved brand perception accelerates fundraising discussions with prominent VCs.

Hire dedicated sales and marketing talent

Generating consistent sales pipelines and growing customer bases requires dedicated professionals solely focused on those activities. By bringing marketing and sales in-house, you can create a strategic and coordinated effort across all channels with defined key performance indicators.

Sales representatives can maintain focus on prospecting, demos and closing deals rather than balancing multiple responsibilities. Meanwhile, dedicated marketers gain deeper insights into markets to develop targeted campaigns.

By hiring sales directors, account executives, marketers and customer success managers on a permanent basis (instead of temporary contractors), you can establish your brand as a serious player with the resources for long-term partnerships and support.

Use case: An agritech start-up secures $300k to expand their team as they break into overseas markets. They hire an experienced export manager to spearhead sales into Asia and recruit a field marketing officer to trial new products with local farmers. Enquiries from Indonesian conglomerates grow 300% within six months, validating demand in key export markets.

Create educational and thought leadership content

Invest in developing helpful resources like eBooks, whitepapers, webinars, case studies and videos that address industry challenges or demonstrate how others are succeeding. This can establish your expertise and convince prospects to do business with you.

Distributing this content across your website and industry publications as well as targeted email marketing builds trust and positions your company as a thought-leader. It also provides educational value to engage and convert leads.

Use case: A mining IoT start-up uses $50K in non-dilutive financing to produce a series of product demo videos showing how their new wearable sensor could reduce safety risks in mines. After publishing the videos to YouTube and LinkedIn, downloads of their related whitepaper grows by 70% within three months as these content marketing efforts raise awareness of key issues in the sector.

Increased content marketing exposure positions the start-up as an industry expert. It drives twice as many registrations for their upcoming webinar discussing trial results. After the webinar, several large mining companies initiate pilots of the sensor technology. Within six months, pilots at two sites converted to paid contracts. The growth in qualified sales opportunities directly resulting from the content strategy validated further investment.

Invest in sales and marketing automation tools

Modern tools like Hubspot and Salesforce streamline workflows from lead generation all the way through nurturing to conversion. Automation workflows within these tools allow you to create personalised touches to your communications based on behavioural triggers while freeing up time spent on manual, repetitive tasks.

Integrated CRM and marketing automation also provide a single, comprehensive view of customer interactions across channels for better profiling and targeting. Real-time analytics then help optimise campaigns and ROI.

Use case: A renewable energy company secures $50K to implement a workflow automation tool. Automated email sequences double demo requests within six months. Insights from the CRM also helped tailor sales pitches, increasing deal conversion by over 30%.

Analyse marketing ROI

Keeping track of your marketing ROI is essential. However, ROI tracking requires sophisticated analytics tools, personnel and months of experimentation—this can be costly. With a boost of capital from non-dilutive sources, acquiring robust attribution platforms to optimise marketing spend becomes much simpler.

Detailed sales attribution lets start-ups eliminate underperforming campaigns to reroute budgets towards the highest converting channels. Ongoing testing then refines strategy around digital, field, partner and content-driven tactics. Continuous advancement strengthens the business’ free cash flow and makes room for access to additional funding for spend on the best campaigns.

Use case: An edtech start-up uses $50K of funding to implement Google Analytics 360. With the new attribution tools, they analysed three months of various content campaigns targeting universities. Results show email remains most impactful for generating Chrome downloads but under delivers on trial conversions. The start-up reallocates 30% of email spends to newly optimised landing pages, doubling university demo sign-ups within two quarters.

Regular improvements to marketing initiatives directly translates to growing subscription sales and ROI. Data-driven optimisation strengthens early revenue traction and long-term customer lifetime value.

By effectively applying non-dilutive finance to scaling operations through sales and marketing initiatives, start-ups can realise significant commercial gains, accelerate growth efforts and keep improving business operations, which in turn creates opportunities for additional funding.


This article is for informational purposes only, is general in nature and does not consider your specific situation. It is not, and should not be relied upon for, financial, tax, legal or investment advice.