marketing on a budget

15 Sep Top Three Tips for Marketing on a Budget

Grow your business without breaking the bank! Marketing on a budget IS possible.

Marketing: communication with your customers in order to sell a product or service

Budget: adjective // inexpensive

Marketing on a limited budget can tax and frustrate even the most seasoned small business owners, but it doesn’t have to. We’ve got some great tips for you on maximizing your precious resources, and stretching your marketing budget.

First, let’s make sure you’re organized, focused and customer-centric.

Small, niche markets are much more affordable and reachable than traditional, outdated mass-market approaches.

One of the first things we do with a new client is talk about your target customers. Trust us – not everyone is your customer, and not getting specific wastes time and money. If you don’t have a customer database, spend a few hours thinking about who buys your product or service.

Start with demographics – things like gender, age, income and location, then drill down into psychographics, which deals with behaviors. What is the most pressing problem or issue your target customer has? In the marketing world, we call these pain points.

Nothing motivates a person quite like pain.

Right? So, your goal is to find a pain point and then, solve it with your product or service. A few examples of common pain points are time pressure, social pressure, work pressure, family pressure. Solutions for these could include fast service, status symbols, efficiency or time-savers for busy parents. Get the idea?

If you need help with this, search the web – there’s tons of free resources to help get you started. And, think about what’s different about your product or service, focus on that and speak directly to your customer’s needs.

Once you’ve identified your target customers and your unique features, you’re ready to get into some low-cost marketing strategies.  As you start communicating with your customers, remember: Be Yourself, Be Consistent, Be Authentic.

And now for our top three tips for marketing on a budget:

Create a Facebook group.

We know, we know – Facebook is a monster that demands feeding, and businesses everywhere are suffering. The dreaded monetization of the platform means if you’re not paying to promote your business, you’re rendered all but invisible.

But…we’ve got a trick for you to beat the Facebook machine – groups. That’s right, create a Facebook group and invite your customers to join. No newsfeed competition – just your business, front and center. You can set the group to public or private and post away. Just remember to make the group about your customers, focusing on them, not you.

Affiliate Referral Program.

Did you know that about 85 percent of small businesses get customers through word of mouth? This, of course, is FREE and needs your attention. Consider creating an affiliate program where you offer something – maybe a discount, coupon or other offer – for referrals.

Meantime, work and grow your network. Join associations, host a seminar, participate in online forums and groups (Quora, Reddit, LinkedIn, Google+), get on Meetup.com and network, network, network. Don’t overlook message boards, like Yahoo – respond, give advice, link your website!

Email, Email, Email.

Often overlooked, email remains an extremely effective marketing tactic that offers one of the highest conversion rates of all channels. By some accounts, email offers FOUR TIMES the conversion rate of social.

If done correctly, you can not only communicate directly with current and prospective customers, but also harvest leads and grow your business. Don’t have an email list? Start right now!! Use web forms to harvest emails on your social channels, website, blogs – anywhere you can. Purchasing email lists is also is an option; just remember to focus on your niche market and ideal customers.

For more tips on email marketing, check out our July 21 blog post aptly titled, “Email Marketing is Dead…Not!”

Don’t have time to handle your marketing? Contact us today!