Marketing is critical for every business, and in some circumstances, can be very costly. So, for small companies and start-ups, it is crucial to be aware of any marketing initiatives that are either low or no cost. If we can make the most of our marketing opportunities, we can see growth happening with much more ease as we move forward. Here are what we consider to be the five most effective marketing methods when working with a tight budget.
If you are tied to a location or area, then distributing leaflets can really help. This can be significant as it often gives you a chance to physically talk to your potential customers as you hand these out. You may have a unique opportunity to hear if they are likely to become customers, and if not, why not. It is relatively inexpensive to have flyers printed, and the potential expensive part is if you are paying staff or an agency to distribute them.
Ambush marketing is an exciting concept. It is where you use a large event that is happening in your vicinity and use it to gain exposure without actually becoming an official sponsor or advertising partner. If you had a significant sporting event in your city, then you can create promotions and offers based on this. Or you could even advertise in public spaces on the routes to the venues associated with the events.
For companies who know exactly who their customers are, it can pay to get in touch with them directly, and this is called direct marketing. This is particularly useful for those operating on a business to business basis, as you can quickly check business directories and phone them up or send out promotional packages and product samples. You could also engage an email marketing agency to create and manage email lists to market to thousands at once at a low cost directly.
Social media is possibly the most prominent single aspect of online promotion that helps smaller businesses. Just using social media is not enough unless you know the methods that get results. You must create engaging content that is as visually impressive as possible with a clear message that speaks to customers. Know which platform to use for your demographic, is it Facebook for middle-aged and older, Instagram and Twitter for younger users. It’s also key to time Tweets and posts appropriately, and social media platforms allow timed posts, which can be targeted accurately if you pay a little for the advertising.
Word of Mouth
The best promotion you can achieve is that of independent customers talking you up. If you are good at what you do and get a recommendation, then no amount of paid-for advertising can rival this. Be sure to check that customers are happy with your products and services and attend to any complaints promptly. Encourage satisfied customers to leave positive online reviews as this shows others you are trustworthy and helps your SEO efforts.