Today, we’re going to talk about marketing your business on a budget.
While it would be wonderful to have a marketing budget like Coca Cola, Apple, or Wal-Mart, the majority of businesses have to operate marketing strategies in “The Kinks” fashion. If you are not familiar with what I am talking about, it was a favorite song of mine when I was a rowdy teenager.
So are you trying to manage your business on a small budget? If so, I have some tips for you.
Marketing Your Business on a Budget
Here are 14 strategies you can implement if you are marketing your business on a budget…
# 1: Write And Publish Valuable Blog Content
This is one of the top ways Chuck does so well with Online MLM Community and also helps me immensely with my freelance business. Just writing high quality content brings business flocking in. And it costs little to start a blog.
The key to success is to publish valuable content and do it consistently. Don’t just publish a 300 word post. Take some time and effort and write the best post possible. It makes a huge difference if you want to stand out with the search engines.
You don’t even have to write the content yourself. Hire a qualified freelancer and let them do it for you!
A blog with useful content shows your audience and customers that you are a trusted source. Writing posts about topics they will find interesting and helpful shows them that you are more than just a business selling a service or product; it shows them that you care about spreading useful information in your industry.
Source: Snapshot Interactive
# 2: List Your Business In Search Engine Directories
It only makes good sense to list your business in Google My Business (free), Bing Places For Business (free) and Yahoo Localworks ($29.99 per month).
The Yahoo option lists your business in over 50 places.
According to Moz research, web directories and local citations still appear to be a small ranking factor – especially for local businesses.
# 3: Always Ask For Referrals
No matter who you are conversing with, there is always an opportunity to ask for referrals. Don’t be shy, just do it and watch your business explode.
You might consider creating a referral program and PAYING people to give you referrals. Figure out how much money you spend, on average, to acquire a new customer. Take that amount and pay it to people whenever one of their referrals becomes a customer. It’s a good business move. You will make your PROFIT on the repeat orders.
According to the Wharton School of Business, a referred customer costs a lot less to acquire and has a higher potential for retention and loyalty. In fact, a referred customer has a lifetime value twice as high as a non-referred customer.
# 4: Create And Pass Out Business Cards
It behooves me why anyone would have a business and not have business cards. There are so many opportunities to get new customers and clients by simply handing your business card to them.
Now, you could go through the work of designing and printing them yourself, but I suggest using the professional services of VistaPrint. They are low price and high quality.
Even better, when you are out and about networking, focus on getting the other person’s business card. That puts you in control of the sales process, because you can contact them whenever you need to, rather than sitting back and hoping they call you first.
Handing someone a business card while you introduce yourself and your company will help generate an opinion of you. Even if they forget you and whatever information you shared (which happens a lot), they’ll have the actual card so that they can contact you again. Leaving someone with a tangible means to get into communication with you is much more effective than saying a name and hoping it sticks.
# 5: Create Your Own Elevator Pitch
Now it is time to get creative…
Imagine you are on an elevator with another person and they ask you what you do.
How can you market yourself and your business in a few seconds of time while the elevator moves floors. Here is my example…
With over 50 books published and many posts and articles all over the internet, I own LancerLife where I, along with independent writers I contract, create content, press releases, eBooks and so much more. We work with multiple niche areas in business, sports, military, and even some comedy. It is easy to find us… Just visit lancerlife.com.
I would then hand them my business card.
Try to keep your Elevator Speech to 2-3 sentences max. Keep it clear and concise and focus on the benefits of what your company offers.
According to Winograd, an ideal elevator pitch should spark interest, be interesting and memorable, and last about 30 to 60 seconds (the length of an average elevator ride, hence the name). Any longer and you risk losing your audience’s attention; any shorter and you might leave out important information. Include details about your business that encourage open-ended questions and conversation from whomever you are pitching, she said.
Source: Business News Daily
# 6: Be Social
This is essentially, a no brainer.
Create business social pages on Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram and share your content as well as other valuable information. Let your social followers see inside the business. Tell them your story. It takes time, but that is really the only cost of this marketing strategy.
I would suggest you have a presence on several social media platforms, but put your major focus on one social media platform. Let that be your hub of operations. Pick the one that people in your target market are most likely to use.
Ambassador says 71% of consumers who have had a good social media service experience with a brand are likely to recommend it to others. This shows the importance of social media in businesses.
Source: REVE Chat
# 7: Build A List
It can do your business a lot of good if you build an email list and send out regular newsletters. You can use an automatic system like Aweber or Mailchimp to simplify the process.
This method works quite well and as you grow in stature. Your list will allow you to communicate frequently with your customers and prospects, keeping your business in their mind at all times.
The key to success is to email your list at least 1-2 times per week and provide valuable content. Focus on educating and helping your email list solve their problems, rather than just trying to sell your products.
“The money’s in the list.”
That means that your revenue depends on how large and healthy your email list is. Email subscribers, if they are engaged and active, can bring you a fortune. On the other hand, your efforts to approach customers will be useless if the contacts you have aren’t relevant, the email addresses are inactive, or you don’t have them at all.
# 8: Attend Networking Events
By meeting people at various events, your business and brand will become more recognized. Attend trade shows and other events and pass out your business card. Often, people who have met you will refer you to others looking for products or services you offer.
When you go to these events, focus on connecting with no more than 4-5 people. Really focus on connecting with these people. Ask questions about what they do. Be a good listener. You’ll do much better by doing that than by just handing all 50 attendees your business card.
Even if you don’t get a call or email right away, the amount of first-hand connections you make at networking events is incredibly valuable. You should have a stack of business cards by the end of each event. When you reach out to each new contact, they’ll be able to put your face to your name, and you’re much more likely to get a response. In fact, 85% of professionals say they develop a more meaning relationship after meeting someone in-person. Remember to act quickly, and send an email or LinkedIn request within the first 24-48 hours while your interaction is fresh in someone’s mind.
# 9: Video Marketing
Just a quick video posted on YouTube about your business and how you came to be can also draw customers.
Try it! You may find you will want to make more videos in the near future.
Whatever you do, don’t be boring. Focus on educating and entertaining your prospects. Make a YouTube channel for your business and post videos frequently, at least once per week.
Another good news is that your videos don’t have to be perfect. It’s the content that matters! Latest research shows that users are mostly put off by videos that don’t explain the product or service clearly enough. Low quality and poor design didn’t matter nearly as much.
# 10: Use Your Vehicle
A magnetic sign or a back window logo on your car or truck can garnish more business. Many network marketers use this method and it works wonders.
Having a magnetic sign made is actually quite inexpensive and many people will see it. Just be sure you drive safely or the calls may not be about your business.
Magnetic signs ensure regular brand publicity without repeat investment or effort. Designed to last long, custom magnets involve only one time expense. Once you get these magnets stuck on the vehicles, they will continue to be moving billboards for your business. These low cost promotional gifts are sure to get you customers than many other forms of advertising. The cost of car magnets will come only to a fraction of newspaper or TV advertising.
# 11: Give Samples or Free Trials
Allowing a person the opportunity to try your product or service for free can create a customer for life. It is a low-cost way to generate business. Not everyone will buy after getting a freebie, but a large percentage will.
Product sampling can be a powerful first step in getting a consumer to try your product for the first time. It can also be your first step in creating an emotional connection between your company’s product and your target consumer. That emotional connection is the core of developing loyalty to your brand.
# 12: Have Contests
People love to enter contests.
Try having your own contest and give away a product for free to the winner. You may be quite surprised how many of the non-winners decide to purchase the product anyway.
I had one for one of the books I published and sales for that book jumped by 65% immediately after the contest.
Whatever you do, make sure you collect everyone’s contact information who enters the contest, so you can follow-up with them at a future date.
We find contests to be a great way to grow our customer list and reduce our acquisition costs. We also love the excitement that they bring to the customers, and the general brand awareness that we gain.
~ Aimee Cheshire, Hey Gorgeous
# 13: Run Ads On Google & Facebook
You will want to watch your Return On Investment, but usually running ads on Facebook or Google Adsense can be profitable.
I highly recommend starting a small run just to see how your ROI (Return on Investment) is.
You can even outsource this to a professional marketing agency, if you don’t have the time or patience to set up a campaign yourself.
Many small-business owners can’t afford huge magazine layouts that function as a shotgun approach to advertising. When every dollar counts, online advertising allows business owners to set a specific budget over time. Some platforms allow advertisers to spend as little as $5 per day to test a campaign.
# 14: Telemarketing
Cold calling people is another low-cost marketing strategy. But you do need to have a strong mind and hard emotions. People can be quite mean over the phone at times. I mention this because I was a professional telemarketer for several years.
Don’t let anyone tell you it doesn’t work, because telemarketing does work. Just make sure you familiarize yourself with the DO NOT CALL List.
You can also outsource this to a freelancer if cold calling doesn’t appeal to you.
One of the advantages telemarketing has over other direct marketing methods is that it involves human interaction. Used correctly and by professionals, the telephone is a very cost-efficient, flexible and statistically accountable medium. At the same time, the telephone is still very intimate and personal, one person speaking with another.
If you are marketing your business on a budget, you just need a little creativity. What you lack in money, you can make up for in hustle.
Please tell us your favorite tips for marketing your business on a budget. Which method works best for you? If you have questions, you can ask them below.
I hope these strategies help you. Be sure and share this post with others. They could use the ideas too! Thanks for visiting our website.