10 Ways To Market Your Business On A Budget (or Free)
Marketing your business can be expensive. You have a budget to manage and sometimes money gets tight. Lucky for you there are many solid marketing options that are cost-effective or absolutely free that can help you stay within that budget you’ve been stressing over. Here is our list of 10 ways to market your business on a budget (or free), in no particular order. See what works for you.
1) Social Media
Social Media is one of the greatest tools for businesses today. It is a way for them to stay in constant contact with their audience. Keeping up with all of your accounts can be quite a struggle, and choosing the right platforms for your business in the first place may also prove challenging. However, the benefits of social media are undeniable!
One of our favorite marketing tools is Facebook Advertising. With a well-crafted FB ad you’ll be raking in leads and boosting your business. This costs money of course, but marketing your page on your own is also possible and free! With the right strategy & content and you could be reaching 1000’s of potential customers in your area, all on your own.
Facebook is just ONE tool of many! There are so many more social media platforms for marketing your brand. Most all offer paid advertising as well, but you can always build your presence for free! Don’t forget some of these other essential social media – related things you should do for your business: Create Page for Google+, FB, Twitter, Yelp & LinkedIn; List your website on Google, Bing & Yandex & create business page. Depending on your industry, also check out: Instagram, Snapchat, Pinterest, Tumblr, Twitter, Viber, WhatsApp, and YouTube.
The only way to keep people interested and grow your social media page(s), is to create interesting & compelling content. That content cannot be too complex though. The average attention span on social media is about 3 seconds, amd no one wants to read TOO much anymore. People want titles and short sentences combined with pictures, maps or graphs (Yes, dumbed down). This way the reader can almost immediately understand the point you are trying to convey.What do you call this picture/text? An Infograph.
Infograph popularity EXPLODED in the past year and it only continues to grow. Not everyone is artist or designer though, right? Well there are plenty of websites out there that make creating an awesome info-graph super simple. So simple a caveman could do it. Some of them are completely free! Get to work now with tools like Canva, Vizualize, Google Charts, Venggage, Easel.ly, Infogr.am & Piktochart.
3) Business Cards
Tried and true. Business cards are one of the great marketing techniques that have maintained its value over the years. I personally always grab a business card whenever one is available. These days people also have the ability to digitize business cards using an app, so it’s safe to say the business card is going nowhere.
If you already have your own business cards, then all you need to do is get them out there! Leaving a few of your cards at another business, the town hall, grocery store or even a laundromat is an excellent idea. Push your mini flyers everywhere you can and they will do their job. Free advertising!
Need business cards? We offer 500 high quality, UV gloss, dual sided cards for only $19.99! If you need a design that really stands out and is remembered, our designers will customize an eye-catching card for you for an additional price between 29.99 & 59.99. Even if you decide to go elsewhere, it’s just a small amount of money to make sure that your card gets noticed and held on to.
4) Local Networking Events
Local networking events are one of the most underrated ways to market your business. These events are often educational, but are incredibly valuable. While attending you have the opportunity to build a network of people you can go to for advice and/or who can recommend your business to people in their own networks. You’ll often find excellent affiliates, maybe a supplier or even just have an opportunity to speak to competition. The benefits of local networking events are a plenty, you just need to get out there!
Ok I understand, I never hear of these events happening either. But they are relatively simple to find. Check with your local Chamber Of Commerce, or town/city hall. The US Small Business Administration also usually has information on their website SBA.gov. Not to mention there are plenty of apps out there now for these events. We recommend Meetup, Eventbrite or even Craigslist. If you still have no luck, try some others! You won’t regret it.
A blog (weblog) is an excellent way to communicate to your audience. Hence making a great marketing technique. With a blog you can post deals, discounts, promotions and some plain old content. But be sure to keep that content interesting to keep readers coming back.Whether it’s a good personal industry-specific story or a post on news related to your industry; just keep it interesting. Every time someone sees your blog, you are marketing your business; free advertising. We often say here that your website is your digital store front that is open 24/7 – 365. A blog is similar, only it attracts the attention to the storefront. More readers means more leads. More leads means more business and more money in your pocket. Try WordPress or Blogger and get started.
E-mail Marketing is a proven and effective way to generate leads and revenue. Some of you may think, really? Those annoying e-mails I get from this company or that one? Yes, believe it or not, they work! Don’t believe me? The average return on Investment when utilizing e-mail marketing is $38 for every $1 spent. If that doesn’t go to show you how well this tactic works then here is one more statistic: For 89% of marketers, e-mail serves as their primary channel for lead generation. I am willing to bet that you, yes you reading this right now, check your e-mail at least once a day, right? Most people do. I know I check mine probably 20 times a day. That’s because e-mail is a vital part of society now. Receiving promotions and useful information through e-mail is a huge part of our lives. Plain and simple, e-mail marketing works.
Those marketers who rely on e-mail lead generation includes us! E campaigns are one of the many marketing tactics we use for building your business. However, if you want to try it out yourself.. go for it! Constant Contact is a great tool for starting an e-mail marketing campaign. If you can develop your own network of family, friends, customers and associates then you can do this for free. Have a sign up on your website for your newsletter or promote it through social media. Then all you need to do provide good content or good deals and you are sure to be successful.
Search Engine Optimization is so very important for marketing online. Let’s say your company has been successful for 10 or 20 years, without the proper SEO tactics your website won’t be getting found. If no one can find your website, or when someone searches their browser and you are not on that first page, you’re wasting marketing potential. Not only that, you are basically wasting your website. You’ve paid for that site to be seen. When someone types in your industry and your area into their search bar, you should be there! Don’t worry, you can make that happen.
If you maintain or have made your own website, SEO seems daunting but with a little effort, it’s doable. If you are not up for the task or not very tech-savvy, there are plenty of other’s who are available for hire to improve your SEO ranking. Our company includes SEO with each of our website designs and also as a standalone product. Many web companies will provide seo services as well. With some captivating content, solid keywords, adding metadata & alt tags to your pages and by keeping content and design up to date; you should be on the first page in no time.
8) Create Deals & Promotions
You’ve got to spend money to make money. Or at least make consumers believe that they are getting a deal, because one thing that people cannot resist is a good bargain. Promotions, discounts, deals and savings are all great marketing techniques. You may notice alot of large companies use this technique and that is because it works. You can use social media, your blog, web site and advertisements to promote your deals and attract attention. You’ll not only drum up business, but make customers happy as well.
We like to create at least one new promotion each month. We make a genuine bargain for our customers, which helps us build good relationships with them. A great deal promotes itself. Before you know it, new clients are taking advantage. Not to mention the promotions are something for them to keep their eye on. Cashing in when it suits them. What is lost in revenue is always made back in the end by providing a great service at an unbeatable price.
9) A Good Old Fashioned Pitch
The elevator pitch, one of the oldest marketing tactics around. Not all marketing can or should be done digitally. To be successful you still need to get out there, talk to some people, create a network, build personal relationships and so forth. That being said, working on your elevator pitch is very important. Also a completely free way to market your business!
An elevator pitch is basically your sales pitch in about 30-60 seconds. Now we touched on the average person’s attention span earlier, but let’s just say it is not very long. And because of that, you really need to capture the listener’s attention in the first 20 seconds or so. Get them excited or at the very least, intrigued. Then in the next 10-40 seconds provide solid information and tell them what they want to hear. If you can do that, the listener will then want to speak with you further; you’ve got yourself a lead. Practice your pitch and get out there!
10) Family & Friends!
Last but not least is the most cost-effective marketing tool available; your family and friends. Kind of a no brain-er we know, but these are the people you can count on; guaranteed. Some way or another your family and friends will assist you in marketing your business. Passing out business cards, telling people about you, and so on. You might find that your Mother’s best friend owns a company that could use your services, or your second cousin knows some important people in your industry. Someone may have connections or even know potential clients that you weren’t aware of, you just never know! The impact of friends and family could potentially be great.
These people are loyal and you are bonded by love. I know if I ever come across someone in need of a service that someone in my family offers, I mention them immediately. I see other people do the same thing to me all the time as well. Not only does your friends and family become a walking billboard for you, they are also usually guaranteed customers. Utilizing them to market yourself is effective and completely free of cost! So call them up!
That completes our list of the top 10 ways to market your business on a budget. Some may cost you some loot but many are totally free. So get to work and market your brand! Thanks for checking it out and if we missed anything please let us know! Good luck!