Among all of other challenges small businesses encounter, one thing is common for most: the budget is small. Not only does a business budget have to be divided in any number of ways, but priorities have to be constantly identified and money diverted to them.
Surprisingly, marketing doesn’t always make the top of the list – or even the list – of important things for a business owner to do. What’s ironic is that the lack of effective marketing is what causes so many businesses to fail. But how can you market effectively when your budget is so small?
Thinking outside the Box
Every penny counts when you’re marketing on a budget. So how do you think outside the box? Two easy ways are to think creatively and do things differently. Not only will adopting these two tactics cause you to stand out from everyone else, but you will get noticed. And these are the two elements which form the solid foundation of every successful business.
Don’t be afraid to let your personality shine when you’re marketing your business, and always be honest. When you have these two elements in place, the rest will be able to come together far more easily. When you are being yourself, you can be at ease with everyone you encounter. And when people like you, celebrate: you have just overcome one of the biggest hurdles in business.
It’s All about Making an Effort
Really, the more effort you put into marketing, the less money you will have to spend on it. This means you can market effectively regardless of your budget.
Marketing is really about telling people who you are. And there are many ways to do this on a shoestring. Social media is a great way to get your business name and philosophy out to a lot of people for no cost. If you already have a web cam and simple video software installed on your computer, you can film a short clip of yourself telling the viewer about your business, and then post it to YouTube, which is also no cost.
Another way to market your business is to have a blog. But creating content for it is not enough; you must also communicate with those who comment on your entries. It’s these connections you make with people that will help to make you stand out. And people who like you will talk about you, causing them to spread the word about your business to those they know. And word-of-mouth is still the most effective way to advertise a business.
Chase the Few, not the Many
Another way to market your business is to go after those who are known as the ‘influencers’. These individuals are near the top of the business ladder. They may be a journalist at a local publication, or someone who works for a well-known industry publication.
Influencers are everywhere, which can make it tempting to go after them all. But really, you only need the attention of one or two influencers. Once you’ve got it, chances are very good that they will communicate information about your business to their own networks, which themselves could contain any number of influencers. The result is that your business gets in front of a high-profile audience without having to exert that kind of effort to reach them one by one.
Of course, these aren’t the only ways to market your business on a budget. But don’t worry; we will cover the rest in a future article. Meanwhile, grab a pad of paper and a pen and start jotting down what you can do today to get your business noticed. It will be worth it, we promise!