When you think about marketing your business, you might be overwhelmed by dollar signs. Social media ads, promotional videos, marketing professionals—these things all cost money. But there are several low-cost (or no cost!) ways to market your business.
Here are my top 7 suggestions:
1. Start a Blog
If you already have a company website, it should be simple to add a blog page. A blog will not only provide valuable content to readers, it will also keep your website fresh (which is important for search engines, like Google). Blogging also helps you build your credibility, which is incredibly valuable when it comes to attracting new customers.
2. Start a Newsletter
Several services, such as MailChimp and Constant Contact offer free options for their newsletter services. That’s great news for small businesses, who have a relatively small contact list and simply want to try out a newsletter service. These services have tons of features, including pre-made newsletter templates, A/B testing, scheduling, and analytics. Additionally, newsletters are still one of the top ways to promote your business, so why not give it a shot?
3. Use LinkedIn
LinkedIn offers an abundance of features that most people do not take advantage of, including publishing articles and sending invitations through their messaging programs. One of my favorite features is the built-in LinkedIn newsletter. You can publish a newsletter right on their platform, which can then be shared with your contacts. If your contacts opt-in, the newsletter will be sent to their inbox. It’s a great way to build your newsletter list and promote your business.
4. Create a Google My Business Account
If you run a brick-and-mortar establishment, it is essential to create a Google business profile. This profile will give you visibility on Google maps and the “local section” of any Google search.
5. Form Biz Partnerships
Depending on your business, it could make sense to partner with other companies for promotional purposes. You can share each other’s social media posts, participate in joint giveaways or promotions, or keep flyers for your partner business in your shop.
If you run a brewery, you might consider partnering with a pizzeria or sandwich shop. If you sell hiking packs, you could partner with a hiking shoes company. If you’re a florist, you might partner with the chocolate boutique down the street. Form partnerships that make sense and remember this is a two-way street! You can’t expect others to promote your products/services if you don’t promote theirs.
6. Participate in Giveaways
One of the easiest ways to build your email list is to participate in a giveaway. Oftentimes, giveaways are comprised of several different brands who are all willing to give away an item or two to a lucky winner. Many giveaways allow you to collect email addresses AND promote your social media accounts. Consider using one of the platforms described in this comprehensive Blogging Wizard article.
7. Host a Webinar
If you have information to share, why not host a webinar? Many savvy marketers will host a webinar for free, deliver a 45-minute program (with some valuable advice and plenty of hints that there’s more to learn), and conclude the webinar with a special offer. The offer could involve coaching, a special promotion, an eBook, or some other item or service that is compelling and valuable. Is everyone going to take you up on your offer? Of course not, but if a few do, the webinar will have been well worth your time and effort.
Bonus: You can recycle some of the material from your webinar into blog posts, social media posts, or even videos.
You don’t have to be wealthy to create a solid marketing strategy. I encourage you to consider your options, develop a strategy, and STICK TO IT. When it comes to marketing, consistency is key. And don’t forget to track your results. If you don’t know how a marketing campaign went, you can’t learn from your successes or failures.