Starting a business is, for many entrepreneurs, the easy part. Once you have gotten your business registered and ready to start trading, the hard work begins with promoting it via a range of marketing methods, gaining brand exposure and encouraging customers to spend their money on trying the products and/or services that you have to offer them.
For many small business owners who are operating on a tight start-up budget, making significant investments in marketing their new brand could seem impossible. Thankfully, there’s no need to spend thousands of dollars on marketing your new company – there are many routes to take to keep spending to a minimum whilst still enjoying maximum results. We’ve listed some of the best ways to save money on marketing and promoting your new business.
Tip #1. DIY Offline Marketing Materials:
One of the best things about marketing your new business today is that most of it is expected to be done online. This means that, for a small fee, you can use your business website for marketing purposes, along with a huge range of other online marketing methods that we will discuss in more detail further on. However, many business owners don’t want to forgo the idea of using offline marketing methods, such as billboards and flyers, since these can still be hugely effective methods of creating brand exposure and encouraging more traffic to your website or footfall through the doors. But, the cost of hiring a professional graphics designer and printing offline marketing materials could be out of reach for many small business budgets. But, there’s no need to worry – online tools such as this flyer maker allow you to create professional, appealing flyers at a fraction of the price.
Tip #2. Use Social Media Marketing:
Although there are many premium paid features available for businesses on social networks such as Facebook and Twitter, for the most part, setting up a business profile and using it to engage with your customers is free of charge. Because of this, it’s hugely important that new business owners get their brand set up on social networks as soon as possible. For the best results, it’s a good idea to have a presence across all the popular networks, including Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat, and LinkedIn to name a few. However, bear in mind that simply being on social media won’t be enough to effectively market your brand and drive increasing traffic to your site. Social media engagement is absolutely vital; this means being active on social media and responding to followers, posting great content, and encouraging your followers to get involved and share their views through social media polls and more.
Tip #3. Utilize Word of Mouth Marketing:
Never underestimate the power of conversations when it comes to marketing your business! No matter how professional your flyers look or how active you are on social media, there’s always going to be a problem if your reputation isn’t the best. If your customers leave with only bad things to say about your brand, then you can expect this to influence the amount of business that you receive. On the other hand, making sure that you provide each customer with an awesome experience that they’ll want to share the details of with friends and family will help you to gain more customers.
Today, one of the most popular methods of word of mouth marketing is leaving online reviews; this is very convenient for customers and puts the information out there where it can be easily reached by just about anyone who’s interested in finding out more about your brand. Encourage your customers to leave glowing reviews by providing them with a fantastic experience. In addition, you should always be up to date on what people are saying about your brand, so that you can respond accordingly. Even if a customer leaves a bad review, if others see that you have responded by apologizing and offering to rectify the situation, this could help save your reputation.
Tip #4. Use Loyalty Schemes:
When you start a new business, it’s not only important to market to your new customers, but also to encourage loyalty once you begin to build a customer base. One of the best ways of doing this is via loyalty schemes; for example, you can give customers a special card that is marked each time they make a purchase. Once they have made a specified number of purchases from your business, they will be able to claim a free gift or money-off voucher as a thank you for their loyalty to your brand. This is one of the best ways to keep your customers coming back for more when coupled with great customer service and a friendly, hassle-free experience – after all, who doesn’t love a good deal! You could even take it further by rewarding your customers for inviting their friends. For example, you could offer a special deal or voucher to anyone who refers a new customer who then makes a purchase.
Tip #5. Get in the News:
Doing something newsworthy is sure to get your new business out there, especially in your local area. There are plenty of things that you can do to get your business in the news; this doesn’t even have to involve the company as a whole – often, entrepreneurs do things individually, but still have their business name printed when it makes the press. For example, you could do a charity skydive, and get your local newspaper to cover it. A few examples of things that your business could consider doing include charity work, improving the local community, or sponsoring a sports team or similar. Or, your business could provide great opportunities; for example, some companies have schemes that allow ex-offenders to land a job upon their release from jail, helping them to lead a fulfilling life and re-integrate into the community whilst lowering their risk of returning to crime.
Did these tips help you with marketing your new business? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.