A common concern among small business owners is understanding what it takes to grow. The first step is letting more people know that you exist. Marketing your business can be a big ticket item, BUT it doesn’t have to be. Here are a few inexpensive marketing ideas to add to your strategy. These tactics will help you gain visibility, increase website traffic, and improve sales. Be sure to stay connected with our blog. We will continuously add to this list.
1. Create a business blog: Your business blog is meant to create awareness for your brand and drive traffic to your site. According to Hubspot companies with an active blog generate 67% more leads than companies without blogs.
2. Ask for referrals: The best referrals come from your current customers. They will tell others about how awesome you are. It is one of the least expensive ways to grow your business. You can simply ask, “Who do you know that could benefit from….”.
3. Write an article in a local newspaper or trade magazine: Choose an area of expertise that differentiates you from your competitors. If your offering is tailored for consumers, consider contacting your local newspaper editor with an outline of your article. If your products or services are for businesses, contact business magazines.
4. Offer a free resource: ALWAYS capture the person’s contact information in exchange. This will help grow your prospect list for future email marketing initiatives.
5. Host a teleseminar: A teleseminar is a meeting over the phone with more than two participants. It is used to provide information, training, or promote your service or product.
6. Help a local charity: Consider making a cash donation, sponsoring an event, donating services, offer a meeting space, or volunteer alongside your employees. Helping a local charity can improve your public image and potentially increase your media coverage.
7. Content marketing: Content marketing is the process of creating and sharing relevant content to your target audience. It attracts potential buyers to your company without directly soliciting your services or products. Content Marketing Institute says, “content marketing generates over three times as many leads as outbound marketing and costs 62% less”.
8. Social media marketing: When using social platforms, remember the 80/20 rule. Eighty percent of your content should be to educate and entertain and only twenty percent should directly promote your brand.
9. Develop a mobile app: Imagine using a mobile app to replace your loyalty cards. Your customers can keep track of their rewards with full transparency. Gone are the days of losing their cards and needing to start over. A mobile app also allows you to stay connected with your customers and build engagement.
10. Employ social listening: Know what customers are saying about your business and other related businesses through social listening. This gives you the opportunity to learn what is important to your audience and identify ways to differentiate your product or service from you competitors.
11. Video Marketing: Video marketing is trending upward in regards to its effectiveness. Check out Social Media Examiner’s “Essential Guide for Video Marketing."
12. Develop business partnerships and do cross promotions: Building partnerships is a strategy to widen your reach. It’s like partnering with the verizon guy (before he went to T-mobile) and automatically having access to those who follow him. Can you hear me now!
13. Participate in local business or trade fairs: Maximize your trade show experience by collecting the contact information of everyone that visits your table. This will allow you to connect with potential customers to answer additional questions, or even offer a special discount.
14. Social media ads: Ads can boost the visibility for your business. Ad week has a good article on social media advertising mistakes that even big brands make. Avoid these mistakes to prevent wasting precious marketing dollars.
15. Send brochures to 100 target customers and call 8 customers every day: This is more of a sales strategy. However, persistence will pay off. To minimize costs, consider obtaining email addresses to send the brochure. Be sure you are compliant with the CAN-SPAM act.
16. Do a webinar: Marketing is all about casting a net and getting in front of as many people as possible. Webinars are a brilliant way to get in front of a group of people without leaving your office. Zoom, Google Hangouts, and Skype are free platforms to host a webinar.
17. Join a Facebook group: If you are a family lawyer, for example, joining a group titled “Divorced Moms” would provide an opportunity to be a resource for the members. Build trust by building relationships, then try to introduce your product or service.
18. Establish an email marketing program: According to Quicksprout, your email subscribers are 3x more likely to share your content on social media than leads that come from any other channel. It is almost as good as word of mouth advertising.
19. SMS marketing : SMS is also known as text messaging. This type of marketing requires permission from your customers to receive promotional notifications. EZ Texting said "48% of online consumers would prefer to receive loyalty - related text messages."
Go Go Grow!