Marketing is essential for all types of businesses, but things can get a bit tricky if you are an entrepreneur.
With a shoestring budget, entrepreneurs often find themselves looking for cheap yet effective ways to promote their startups.
Gone are the days when there were only a few mediums like magazines, newspapers, and television to promote your business. Today, the world is all about digital marketing because an average individual spends around 24 hours online in a week! Yes, you read that right. People are spending one day in a week browsing through websites and on social media.
What could be a better way to tell them about your products or services?
Today, we are going to share some tactics that take advantage of the internet and can help you reach your clients through technology. Here are a few ways you can promote your startup business for free:
Make a marketing plan
You are more likely to waste resources and money if your marketing activities are unplanned and not structured properly. The key to a successful marketing campaign is defining your marketing strategy. Define your best prospects and identify the best way to reach them. Are you looking for a director of a company, the human resources manager or the mom of a toddler?
Which social media platform will you find them on? Will online customers be searching for your product or service on Google? Write down the answers and refer to them before you design a new marketing campaign. You can also use a marketing plan worksheet to organize the whole process.
Make a website
If you haven’t made a website for your company, set one up today. Having a completely functional and user-friendly website is an important tool for marketing. If you think it will be a little difficult for you to manage it on your own, you can contact an ecommerce website design company to do it for you.
The kind of website you should set up depends on the nature of your business. Do you want it to act as a lead generation tool, an online brochure for your products or a source of information for your potential customers?
Whether you are hiring someone to do a custom design for your website or using an online website creator like Wix or Squarespace, make sure the design is responsive. Responsive website design is one that not only looks good but is easy to navigate on all devices.
Now that your startup website is up and running, you should start looking up SEO or search engine optimization. In other words, set the content of your web pages in such a way that your website pops up whenever someone searches for what you sell or do. Many websites spend a lot of money on SEO, here are a few things you can do yourself:
- Add a different title for every page on your website
- Add common keywords and phrases that people search for in the page title
- Add the relevant details like business name, location, services and phone number on all pages of your website. For example, if you have an online leather jacket store add the keywords ‘leather’, ‘genuine leather jackets’ or ‘men/women leather jackets’ as much as you can.
Email marketing strategy is the third most influential source of information you can use to target B2B audiences. Therefore, a good email marketing strategy can help you reach your prospects. Place a newsletter signup form on your homepage. Alternatively, you can even ask customers to give their email addresses directly.
The key is to remember that you must send informative emails like guides, how-to articles, interesting videos, and infographics. Stay away from commercial content as it will drive subscribers to opt out of receiving your emails.
Post on social media
Research shows that more than 2.4 billion people use social media, so it is important to use this channel to promote your startup business. As your online presence increases, more and more people will recognize it. Moreover, you can even use paid ads on Facebook to bring in more traffic. Instagram is one of the best visual platforms for promoting your new startup. It has more 400 million users and can drive tons of traffic to your website.
Share behind-the-scenes videos, run content and ask Instagram influencers to do a collaboration with your brand.
Try to post compelling and relevant posts on social media. Once you have attracted enough followers, try to encourage dialog by responding to their questions and comments.
Use paid search advertising
Paid search is a good advertising channel for new startups. It allows you to buy targeted traffic through search engines like Google. Google Adwords is one of the leading paid search networks, which features keyword targeting and a cost-per-click (CPC) pricing model.
All you need to do is make custom ads for your business that appear in the search results, and you will only be charged for it once someone clicks on it.
The fact that thousands of people may see your ad for free makes an irrefutable offer. Read this article by the Digital Marketing Institute to know all about pay-per-click advertising.
Sponsor a local event
Another excellent marketing initiative you can take to gain traction in your area is to sponsor a local event. By paying a small fee to the organizer, you can promote your business with marketing materials like flyers, sign boards, banners and more. This mutually beneficial arrangement is highly effective to drive more local customers.
The key is to sponsor events that are relevant to your business niche. If your startup is related to leather jackets, then perhaps you can sponsor fashion shows and expos.
The bottom line is, don’t get overwhelmed by marketing strategies and take one step at a time. Take a look at what your competitors are up to and consider some of these tactics to promote your startup business and generate more sales.