Resources Allocation Within US Tech Startups: How to do branding, marketing, and product development with limited and scarce resources

Christian Ostrowski Vinther

Student thesis: Master thesis


This thesis explores the world of US tech start-ups mainly situated in Silicon Valley, CA. The focus of the paper is on resource allocation within branding, marketing, and product development. It reviews literature within each of these three fields in order to discover an optimal way of conducting branding, marketing, and product development within American tech start-ups with scarce and limited resources. There are a total of six case companies, which were interviewed for this thesis in the data collection phase. One company is located in New York City and the five other start-ups are situated in Silicon Valley, CA. From the interviews with said companies the data was analyzed and compared to the theory on all three areas of interest in order to discover what the general trend among US tech start-ups are, which areas could be optimized, and which aspects are currently the way their should be. In most cases product development is paramount. Building a great product is the main focus of every business interviewed. Branding and marketing on the other hand is not generally of a particular importance to the start-ups used in this thesis. Marketing does have some leeway, however, money is not spent of marketing in any of the cases in the paper. Branding is an aspect, which does not receive any credit within the tech start-ups interviewed. Every company believes branding does not concern them on a count of their lack of resources. However, with both the areas of marketing and branding each company does market and brand the company in question, it is simply not a conscious effort. On the basis of the findings from the data collection a new framework has been developed called The Startup Universe. This framework is the product of what theory regarding branding, marketing, and product development tells us is the correct way of doing those areas combined with the findings of the primary research conducted for this thesis. It is a framework, which can be used by not only US tech start-ups but any start-up for that matter in order to optimize their workflow, create more successful products, and generally help them better their chances of survival in a much fierce marketplace. It is specifically developed with the fact in mind that anyone would be able to apply it to his or her business; i.e. one does not need an advanced degree in order to understand or to apply it to the ‘real’ world. On the basis of the findings and the developed framework The Startup Universe the conclusion of the thesis is that US tech start-ups can without spending monetary resources better their chances of success a great deal by applying simple aspects into their business in the fields of branding, marketing, and product development. The aspects, which should be put in place, is described in detail in The Startup Universe framework.

EducationsCand.merc.smc Strategic Market Creation, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2013
Number of pages82