Large or small, all businesses must promote themselves to be successful. Unfortunately, marketing is not always cheap, especially if yours is a small business with a limited budget. When cash-flow is tight, your first inclination might be to cut your marketing funds, but that would be a mistake.
Small businesses have more inexpensive marketing resources today than ever before. The digital world is full of trackable, cost-effective tools, and all you need to do is take advantage. Here are five ways to promote your business without breaking the bank.
1. Promotional Products
Everyone loves getting free stuff, so why not give prospective clients and potential partners something by which to remember you? One way to promote your brand and place your company at the forefront of everyone’s minds is by giving away promotional products.
Promotional products can take pretty much any form; from a ballpoint pen to an ice bucket emblazoned with your company’s logo or advertising message. This type of promotion is very cost-effective, and it adds a personal touch to your marketing strategy.
2. Social Media
Social media is potentially the fastest way to reach millions of people without spending a great deal of money. In fact, it is free to promote your business on social media, and you can do it yourself with a bit of research and practice. Paid advertising on social media, if done expertly, can be incredibly cost-effective.
Sites like Facebook, Linkedin, Google+, and Instagram all allow companies to market to the masses, and since these platforms are where most people go to find the things they’re looking for, it makes sense you should be there, too. The secret to successfully promoting yourself on social media is to provide high quality, helpful content your customers can use and enjoy.
3. Email Marketing
Email marketing is the use of email to promote products and services, as well as to build relationships with potential customers and clients. The secret to creating a successful email marketing campaign is to grow a robust, organized list of email addresses of people you already do business with and prospective future clients. Email marketing is another low-cost promotional tool you can do yourself. Mastering email marketing gives you a leg up on the competition because you can customize it to fit each client persona.
4. Networking Events
Networking is a process of meeting new people, collaborating, and building and fostering relationships to further grow your business. Attending networking events is perhaps the lowest-cost, most effective way to market your business in person.
Networking events can take place over the phone, through email interaction, at casual and formal social events, networking sites such as LinkedIn or in face-to-face meetings. All these methods are highly effective, and the cost factor is minimal compared to the return on investment they deliver.
5. Go Local
Your local community is a veritable wealth of cost-effective marketing opportunities. For example, your company could sponsor a little league team or host a charity fundraising event. Even printing up bookmarks to place at the public library gets your company’s name out for local customers to see and remember. Once you’ve established your organisation as a local hotspot, you can continue to figure out where and when to target even more current and future prospects.
These five ways to promote your business without breaking the bank will help you find new customers, build upon those relationships, and ultimately, keep your brand in the forefront of everyone’s minds. Marketing doesn’t have to be a race to see who can spend the most. Rather, it’s about how much time and effort you put forth to make it relevant to your customers’ needs.