Content is not limited to blog posts. It includes videos, podcasts, online courses, and a host of other mediums in which people consume information. Too many businesses these days are just wasting resources creating mediocre content with no payoff, now or ever. For example, Instagram users that follow fashion influencers are actively looking to purchase new styles. By building an active, fashion-savvy audience, a clothing retailer can build a consistent direct sales channel. The key is identifying where your customers are and how they like to be approached. Whether you sell a product or offer a service, you can use coupon deal sites like Groupon to quickly promote your business.
Coupon deal sites amass massive audiences, grouped by location, and then allow local, regional or even national businesses to offer limited-time discounts to their members. Benefits include mass exposure, targeted local advertising, increased brand awareness, and an influx of new customers. The cost comes in the form of low revenue per sale.
The primary purpose for using coupon deal sites is not sales. The more significant your discount, the more popular your deal will be. Follow deals going on in your area and see how they play out. If you can, talk with fellow business owners who have run deals and learn from their experience. And make sure — for the love of all that is good and decent — make sure you do the math. Email marketing is the cornerstone of digital marketing. Most of the people who visit your site will not buy from you immediately.
This is something compelling you offer your website visitors in exchange for their email address. There are a lot of marketing channels that are hard. A webinar is essentially a seminar that takes place online. It can be in the form of a presentation, demonstration or discussion.
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Webinars are often used as lead magnets for email marketing and the right topic can drive a large batch of new subscribers to your list. It can also be used to build credibility with your current subscribers. Webinars can also be recorded and used as standalone products or even a series of products.
They are a great medium for both live and recorded training. Webinars tend to be more engaging than simple videos, even if they are used in exactly the same way. Webinars work very well in certain niches. If you have done a good job of positioning yourself as an expert or authority in your niche, promoting a free consultation is a great way to generate new leads. If you have a good interpersonal sales process in place, it also sets you up to close a large percentage of leads. A lot of service providers worry about disclosing too much info in a free consultation.
They feel like potential clients will just take the info and run. In reality, the exact opposite is true. While freeloader types might grab and go, they were never going to buy anyway. The type of people interested in paying for quality will be impressed by the value you provide in the consultation. After all, if you can provide so much value in 30 minutes to an hour, they will believe that your claims are true and that hiring you is the right decision. This can be used both online and offline.
It can be advertised via pamphlets, newspapers, signs, or even word-of-mouth. And it can be prominently displayed on your website and social media channels. Referrals are one of the best ways to find new customers, and who better suited to obtain referrals than your current staff? Your employees know your product or service. They know your customer base.
Offer incentives to your staff members who refer new clients. If you can find out what they want most, you can motivate them to help grow your business. Hold training sessions and teach your staff how to effectively promote your business, but remember that this form of marketing will only work if they genuinely feel good about your business and are properly motivated to pitch it to friends, family, and acquaintances. While much of the world has moved online, print media still exists, and in some niches, it still thrives.
In fact, as recently as , retail consumers cited printed materials as the chief sources of information behind their purchasing decisions. As print media continues to decrease in overall popularity, pricing for ad placement lowers as well. In the right niches, it is now possible to run effective ads at incredibly affordable prices.
That said, print media is rarely effective as a solo marketing strategy. It is best used in conjunction with online marketing strategies, with the two channels arranged to compliment each other and create an engaging experience for potential buyers. If you are a decent writer, sharing your expertise in the form of weekly or monthly write-ups can do wonders for your brand. That audience then begins to think of you when they think of experts in your field. On the more accessible end, local newspapers or non-profit magazines are often looking for quality contributors.
One the more exclusive end, publications like Forbes, Inc, and Fast Company are made up almost exclusively of unpaid expert columns. Make sure that what you write about is valuable to the target audience. Some ideas for articles you can write include:. Joining local business groups will give you the opportunity to meet up with other like-minded people who already share some common ground with you: owning a business.
While a lot of more general entrepreneur groups exist, there might also be some niche-specific groups and meetups in your area. These groups are a great opportunity to bounce ideas off other smart people, share referrals, find talent, and identify new opportunities. They are also a major catalyst in expanding your network around the city in which you live. Connections tend to multiply, and if your group takes networking seriously, you can leverage your seemingly minor connections into much significant ones. Lastly, these groups can lead to joint ventures and profitable partnerships, which we will discuss more in the next section.
Teamwork is always more effective than singular effort, and combining resources with another business can help you do things you could never accomplish on your own.
1. Craft an elevator pitch
Your goal is to work out a complementary arrangement that provides mutual benefit for both businesses. As online channels become more and more saturated with content, fewer companies look to direct mail, and that means opportunity for you. Like with any marketing strategy, success comes down to targeted creativity. Just like you need to compel people to click your blog post headline, you need to compel mail recipients to open your letters. Start with the envelope, which will never be opened if it looks like a run-of-the-mill promo piece.
Stand out. Use a colored envelope. Use an unusual shape, size or material. Make it look interesting. If possible, handwrite the address on every envelope or include something bulky inside to make the envelope lumpy — anything you can do to grab attention. Image Credit: Freelogoservices. The next thing to focus on is the content.
Like most offline campaigns in , direct mail is typically run in conjunction with an online marketing funnel. In terms of branding and establishing yourself as an authority, few things are more impactful than being a speaker at popular events in your niche. While invitations to speak at larger events are often extended as a result of accomplishments or visible influence, you can also work your way into these opportunities by becoming a talented speaker and delivering great talks at smaller events.
Or you can simply use it as another marketing channel, by speaking at some of these types of events:. BuildFire Co-Founder.
Here are 25 marketing ideas to consider:
I'm a digital marketer by trade and an entrepreneur at heart. I'm here to help businesses go mobile and build apps more efficiently than before. Request a Quote Build an App Sign in. Do you want to build a high-performance app? No, I know what I'm doing… Yes, show me how! If you consider yourself a thought leader in a certain industry or topic, be sure to be on HARO responding to reporters. This is a simple but effective marketing idea for small businesses operating brick-and-mortar stores or service businesses.
Yelp is a fantastic way to find new customers, so long as you keep up a strong presence. Yelp for business can be free or paid, depending on how much you want to invest. Sometimes your next best customer is your last customer, meaning that you should invest in the relationship you have with your customers.
Starting a customer appreciation program might encourage people to continue using your service. Although not a totally free marketing idea for small businesses, participating in local fundraisers or contributing to local charities is a great way to show public support for the organization you care about. And depending on the agreement, you might be able to get some visibility with local customers if you can sponsor an event or giving away branded prizes. You can shell out a lot of money perfecting your SEO strategy , but there are certainly ways to make small investments in this marketing strategy for small business.
If your customers are online, then the best marketing ideas for your small business will be online, as well. One of our favorite free marketing ideas? Building a presence on online forums like Quora, Reddit, or just about any forum where your customers are posting. Answering questions in a non-promotional, helpful manner will help build visibility among your potential customers. Selling your business too heavy-handedly, though, will turn new customers away from your business.
If you run a business where you have a car driving around town all the time, then an incredibly easy, near-free marketing idea for your small business is to brand your car!
Simple and Cost-Effective Ideas for Small Business Marketing
However, some smaller conferences can be pretty inexpensive, and if you can avoid traveling, they can be down-right affordable. Conferences are a crucial marketing idea for small businesses as they help you network with other leaders in the industry is there a partnership in your future? Some businesses will be better suited to be on certain platforms.
Plus, you can try out these free marketing ideas and find one that really works. Give us a call. Type below and hit Enter To search. Want the best small business strategies delivered straight to your inbox? About Latest Posts. Emily Kate Pope. Emily Pope is a writer and editor. She specializes in all things small business marketing and financing. Develop a customer referral program. Tell a story with data or milestones. This might be one of our favorite marketing ideas for small business. Make your own infographics. Publish distributed content. Engage in one-to-one marketing.
Hold an online contest. Develop an industry partnership. Developing partnerships is a must have on any list of free marketing ideas. Try your hand at guerilla marketing. Host an event or class. Hold business card drawings. Send email newsletters. Even the most basic email marketing plans can have a big impact. Join a professional organization.
Create a business mascot to promote your brand. Take a stand on a controversial industry topic. Stop selling cigarettes at your store and issue a press release. Take a stance, act on it, and then tell people all about it. Create a Blog A company blog filled with useful posts for your industry and customer base is a great way of connecting with current customers as well as generating new ones.
Invest in YouTube Videos With YouTube growing to be the second-biggest search engine in the United States second to Google , making a presence on YouTube is a great, cost-effective marketing idea for small business. Manage Your Yelp Presence This is a simple but effective marketing idea for small businesses operating brick-and-mortar stores or service businesses. Start a Client Appreciation Program Sometimes your next best customer is your last customer, meaning that you should invest in the relationship you have with your customers.
25 Marketing Ideas for Small Business
Donate to or Sponsor Fundraisers and Charities Although not a totally free marketing idea for small businesses, participating in local fundraisers or contributing to local charities is a great way to show public support for the organization you care about. Invest in SEO You can shell out a lot of money perfecting your SEO strategy , but there are certainly ways to make small investments in this marketing strategy for small business. Build a Presence on Online Forums If your customers are online, then the best marketing ideas for your small business will be online, as well. Vehicle Branding If you run a business where you have a car driving around town all the time, then an incredibly easy, near-free marketing idea for your small business is to brand your car!
Have a fleet of vehicles? You could order car magnets in bulk and put them on all your cars. Plus, if you have the time, you can do this all on your own and for free. Try one of these marketing ideas for small business soon and see what works for yourself! Editorial Note: Fundera exists to help you make better business decisions.