Marketing Budget and Productive Ways to Spend – Not everyone has hundreds of thousands of dollars to throw at their marketing campaigns. In fact, for most small businesses, online marketing is a luxury, and they often can’t afford to invest time and money in covering all of the social media bases or perfecting their SEO strategy.
However, things don’t have to be like that. You can achieve incredible things without spending big bucks on SEO consultancies, Adwords campaigns and similar techniques. Here are some ideas that should set you on your way to affordable marketing success.
If Free Advertising Exists, Use It
Advertising on TV or radio always comes with a cost, and the same usually applies to advertising online. But that’s not always the case.
For example, you could sign up your business to Google+ and then the Google My Business service. This should push your business to the top of local searches without costing a penny.
Build a simple Facebook page as well. You don’t need to buy in adverts or make any effort apart from listing your company address, name, contact details and information about your products. Even the most basic Facebook page can start to generate likes and drive traffic to your website.
There are also plenty of free listings sites on the web such as Yelp and Yellow Pages along with industry-specific listings such as Trip Advisor. Sites like Showmelocal are also a great place to attract local visitors while directories linked to search engines like Yahoo Local can also be a solid source of traffic.
Create A Logo to Advertise Your Business
It’s amazing how powerful graphics can be. They grab the attention of casual browsers and create a unique, easily recognizable identity for the company concerned. So, when people walk around town and see your plumbing van with the logo they noticed on Facebook, they will instantly make a connection.
You can outsource logo creation for as little as £50 (use Fiverr), so why not give it a try? At the very least, having your own distinctive logo is a great way to brand your Facebook or Google+ pages. It could be the best £50 you ever spend.
Are You looking for an SEO or social media conference speaker? Contact me using form below
Use Ad Targeting to Focus on High Value Customers
If you are working to a budget, wasting money on pointless ads is a big no-no. Instead of sending out bulk ads via Twitter or Facebook, use whatever targeting tools each social network makes available to its users.
Zero in on the kind of people who are likely to make a purchase. They could be people near you, newly-weds, people with young children or those in a certain income bracket. The key thing is to target the right group for your products, so think about it and make your ad campaigns as focused as possible.
Create A Snappy Landing Page With Great Content
When you don’t have much money to spend, getting the basics right is essential, so be sure to pay some attention to your company website. You don’t need vast quantities of content to attract hits, likes or conversions. All you really need is a well laid out landing page that is branded with your company’s identity and makes it easy for customers to make a purchase.
Write a couple of blog posts that talk about what you do and why it is relevant to potential customers. Link to them from your social networks or comment about them on other sites. Even on a very small-scale, this kind of content marketing can produce big dividends without a sizable investment.
Think about mobile optimization as well. If you rely on local customers, many of them will search for businesses using smart phones or tablets. With a simple, mobile optimized site, you can be in the ideal position to serve these customers, and setting your site up for mobiles doesn’t cost much. Given how many people now use mobiles to shop online, it’s a small investment that is well worth making.
Tap Into Local Networks
Small businesses with small marketing budgets also need to make the most of their communities. If you are trying to reach people in your local area, try to become a trusted, prominent part of the community. It doesn’t cost much to attend charity fairs or to speak at local business meetings but it can raise your profile fast.
When you have made strong contacts with influential people, ask them to endorse you or write some content for your site. That kind of external input can really help to generate trust among potential customers, so don’t be afraid to ask.
Try to attract press attention as well (for the right reasons). Writing a press release about who you are and why your company is special is a good way to alert local journalists to your business. Don’t assume that your press release will be ignored. Local papers and bloggers are always desperate for good news stories and fresh new things to talk about.
Achieve Social Media Marketing Success On the Cheap
Having a social media profile is not an optional extra for small businesses. These days, whether you want to reach out to people in your area or on a national scale, having a set of well-maintained social media accounts can work wonders.
Spend a little time finding out who the key people are in your field. Comment on their blogs, retweet them, like their Facebook content and try to engage them with your company. If you can tap into their followers and harness their expertise, it can compensate for having few followers of your own.
When you send out products or provide a service, why not try leaving a short note thanking customers for their purchase and asking them to follow you on social media? It doesn’t cost much and it could result in regular purchases.
Think of Low-Tech Branding Opportunities
Sometimes it helps to think outside the internet. For example, shop windows can be a great place to place an ad for your business, and with a branded car sticker you can take your logo on the road. You could add your company logo to t-shirts or baseball caps without too much expense. You could even sponsor a local sports team. The internet is important, but it’s not the only way to get your message across if you are strapped for cash.
Online marketing is not just a rich man’s game. If you only have £500-£1,000 to spare every month, you can still promote your business and drive traffic to your website, but don’t expect miracles. Dominating Google search results and mastering Facebook ads takes time and money. However, never be afraid to experiment. Even the tiniest marketing budget can make a big difference.