Funds can be tight at startup, but don’t let that stop you from marketing your business. The costs of marketing can range from free to the proverbial arm and leg, but it is possible to start with less- expensive options and let your marketing budget grow with your company.
To help you get off to a good start, we’ve put together five money-saving ways to market your business:
Social media: Social marketing is popular because it works. It gives you the capability of reaching a huge audience of potential customers by utilizing an existing, interconnected network of people, rather than building one from scratch. You can create accounts for your business and get your name, product and location in front of numerous members of your market demographic. Social media accounts also help you see what people are saying about your business. While this can tremendously help your business, it’s important to be mindful of what you post and not over-engage with your customers — too many posts can have the opposite effect, driving people away. Keep your social marketing posts and engagement efforts conversational but professional.
E-newsletters: Sending out an email newsletter is a great way to keep your customers up-to-date on your company, share any new products, services or offers and help bring in business. You can use your e-newsletter to send your customers exclusive offers while also keeping your business in the forefront of their minds. This kind of advertising is not only less expensive than other options but can also give your marketing efforts a personal touch. Be sure not to spam your customers with emails; just send one out once or twice a month.
A customer referral program: A great way to draw new business is to get help from your current customers. A referral program can bring in new faces and keep your current customers or clients happy at the same time. Most referral programs offer a free gift or discount with every new person that gets referred to the business. These kinds of programs can create a great chain-reaction of new business and word-of-mouth advertising.
Get active in your community: Being active in your community can be a huge step toward sustainable success for your business. Take part in local festivals and events and let your community know about your company. Make it clear you and your business care. Building a relationship with your community and other small businesses will, in turn, create lasting customer or client relationships.
Donate products: Donations are good for everyone involved. By donating some of your products or services to those in need, you let people know that you care and that your business means more than just money. On top of helping others, you will be getting your products out to people and marketing your business.
These are just five of many low-cost steps that you can take to market your business without spending all of your money. Don’t be afraid to get creative! Talk to people about your company and take any opportunity you can to share with people what your business is all about. After all, you are always the best advocate for your own success.