PowerUp Your Marketing with VentureLabs

SFU VentureLabs’ Marketing PowerUp program delivers quality marketing services and expertise to growing science and tech startups.


Marketing PowerUp pairs eligible VentureLabs and Venture Connection companies with senior marketing advisors who offer strategy consultation and messaging support and students with marketing, design and writing skills who can execute on a variety of projects including brochure development, website audits, competitive research, and more. Students will be involved in one or more projects, depending on the timeframe and size of each project, working as part of the Marketing PowerUp team. 

Apply to Marketing PowerUp

Marketing PowerUp is about building capacity.

Marketing PowerUp enables companies to get a concrete marketing project off the ground and successfully completed, with the help of a senior marketing mentor and project team—building capacity in both the company and the students.

Here's how it helps founders and students:

1. Science and tech founders are deeply committed to product innovation but may not have the time to manage and mentor a marketing student, or the expertise needed to deliver key marketing initiatives critical to their business.

2. Many talented marketing students are ready for experience in the tech sector but need the guidance of an experienced marketer to add significant value to a startup.

Marketing is essential to a venture’s growth and its ability to deliver a product to market. Yet, according to RocketBuilder’s study of 192 BC companies, “only 52% had a marketing function within the company.” The Marketing PowerUp program encourages companies to invest in marketing resources early-on by demonstrating the value of marketing and by working with them to complete a custom project.

Every year thousands of tech startups and products fail. With rare exceptions, companies that fail to take market dynamics and current and future needs of their customers into account will struggle.

Korst, Whitler, Harvard Business Review 2020

How We Know It Works

The Marketing PowerUP pilot offered nine eligible new ventures the opportunity to identify and address a key marketing need - from improving their storytelling ability to powering up their website, to building an online audience through a content marketing strategy. Services were delivered by skilled students, coached by senior marketing mentors and the company’s lead EIR.

The projects that were completed included creating: brochures, case studies, presentations, lead generation webinars, email campaign set-up, newsletters, blogs, content plan.

Samples - Click on thumbnails for details


"Thank you so much to [the VentureLabs team] for providing us with deep and rich discussions that helped us to communicate a clear message regarding our value proposition. We believe that [these] brochures will result in reaching new customers and building awareness of our services in the Canadian agriculture ecosystem. We had a great experience, and we think [VentureLabs] provides one of the most outstanding services to the SFU StartUp ecosystem. There are not enough words to express our gratitude to all the marketing services team."


"The team provided a useful framework, templates, and good checklist for best practices. very practical."



Eligible Projects

Large Projects (2-3 months):

Marketing Material

  • Company or Product Brochures
  • Customer Success Stories
  • Infographics


  • Media Release
  • Influencer Campaign

Digital Marketing

  • Campaign Planning
  • Paid Ads
  • SEO Implementation

Content Marketing

  • Content Creation (Social Media, Blog Posts, E-book)
  • Content Strategy and Plan
  • Lead Generation Campaigns ( Email, Social Media, Webinars, Other)

Marketing Messaging

  • Develop Messaging/Value Proposition (Senior Work)
  • Branding
  • Persona Development

Mini Projects (2-4 weeks):

  • Website Audit
  • Social Media Audit
  • Copywriting
  • PR/Influencer Scan
  • Market Research
  • Competitive Research
  • Social Media Profile Set-up

Company Eligibility

If you’re a VentureLabs or Venture Connection company, and are ready to power up your marketing, apply to have the Marketing PowerUp team tackle your most urgent marketing project.

To qualify, you need:

  • Commitment from one of your leadership team to bring product and market knowledge, and business objectives
    to the project
  • A clear understanding of your value proposition and the target audience for the project
  • An idea of the marketing project and objective that you'd like to work with Marketing PowerUP to achieve
  • An interest in learning how to work with experienced marketing professionals and those just joining the profession, without the stress of managing either party
  • Current membership as a VentureLabs or Venture Connection company

If you’re interested in the program, but aren’t a VentureLabs or Venture Connection member, visit our programs page to join the VentureLabs community.

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