7 Marketing Tactics for Small Businesses on a Budget
Marketing a small business doesn’t have to make you bankrupt. The digital marketing era offers tons of opportunities for creative minds to effectively market their businesses with low costs. Many small business owners may think that to successfully market their products and services they have to turn to professional agencies and spend a huge budget. To eliminate this belief, we’ve put together a list of 7 hands-on, low-budget marketing ideas that will help you promote your business.
7 Marketing Tactics for Your Small Business
A referral program helps you to mobilize your existing user base to help you find new customers. It is a fantastic way to motivate people to become advertisers of your products or services. A referral program is a general concept that comprises partner programs, customer referral programs, and affiliate programs. It is essential to choose the right type of referral program for your business, but the common philosophy behind this concept is to encourage happy customers to become an ambassador of your brand for a small reward. By using tools like LoginRadius’ Friend Invite, you can better promote your referral program.
Emails are an easy and inexpensive way to promote your products and services directly to your potential or current customers. It has been proven over and over again that email marketing is definitely not dead and is actually the golden goose of most marketing departments. Setting up an email campaign is also not very difficult from the technical point of view and small businesses can easily launch and manage their email marketing campaigns through web applications like MailChimp. Email can be used to increase awareness about a product or service, upsell to current customers or find new leads. MailChimp’s pricing is definitely pretty reasonable for a small business.
Participate in Speaking Engagements
Speaking engagements enable you to promote your products or services to potential clients. Whether it is a speaking opportunity at a local high school class or a town hall meeting, always say “yes” and accept invitations as a speaker. These opportunities not only help you to hone your public speaking and PR skills but also give you ample opportunity to educate potential customers about your products and services.
Content marketing is the art of creating and distributing relevant and valuable content that helps you to drive meaningful and related traffic to your website and in turn increases you customer acquisition. Content marketing encompasses the creation and distribution of all sorts of content pieces aimed at different audiences on a variety of channels. These pieces include e-books, webinars, case studies, white papers, blog posts, podcasts and more. To guarantee a successful content marketing campaign, a strategic plan of promotion is necessary. It won’t help to create the richest and most valuable content of the world when nobody is aware of it. To drive real traffic through your content, you need to combine it with your social media strategy, using some social media management and automation tools like Hootsuite and eClincher. The key to really make content work for you is to take your time with each post that you write and carefully select interested external parties to reach out to. Then inform each one with a small intro about yourself, what you are writing about and why you are sharing it with them. Be sure to understand each party that you reach out to so that you are sharing your content with appropriate people who will value your work and want to share it with their community. The more you give, the more you will receive has been my experience.
Social Media Marketing
The use of social media channels like Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Twitter and Instagram is one of the most cost effective and valuable marketing tactics to promote a small business’ products and services online. The benefits of social media marketing are numerous and will help you to promote your brand outside of your geographic location, get direct feedback from customers to improve your services and promote your products.
Apply for Awards
Applying for an award helps you to put your business on the map and enables you to get your products and services in front of people that you may not have reached through other marketing methods. It also enables you to appear among some of the major brands in your industry and adds to your credibility as a business. You can apply for local business awards or find some specific award for your niche and if there isn’t such an award for your industry, create one yourself. It will make your rivals compete for it and will help you to further promote yourself as an authority voice in your niche.
Search Engine Optimization
You may have already heard about search engine optimization (SEO) and may have tried it yourself, but for those of us who are totally new, it is a process that effectively increases a website’s visibility on organic (not paid) search engine result pages. SEO works hand in hand with content marketing and will help you to establish a reputation as an authoritative voice in a particular niche. This, in turn, will increase your new customer acquisition through organic search results and will help you to better market your small business. These days it’s really best to focus on creating the best online experience possible for your target market and to have content on your site that essentially helps your prospects through the sales funnel (from prospect > to lead > to purchase > then retention). You will also need to build your authority in your market as well by effectively producing valuable content that other authority players in your market deem helpful, unique and shareable. Ideally you want others to share your content with their audience so that you can attain quality external links which slowly add up and will in time improve your search engine rank if done effectively.
We sincerely hope that these 7 online marketing tips help you and your business and if you have any questions about any of them, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We love helping small businesses grow here.