Running a small business is tough – and marketing can be one of the biggest challenges. Most small businesses do not have the funds for a slick – and expensive – professional marketing campaign. Many business owners place a few ads in the local newspaper or run a commercial on a popular radio station, but the impact of those campaigns is often limited and hard to measure.
Smart business owners often take the do-it-yourself approach to marketing and there are some excellent and inexpensive ways to build excitement and buzz. If you are wondering how to market your business effectively without busting your budget, just consider these time-tested methods.
Take a Good Look at Your Brand
If you cannot remember the last time you updated your logo or redesigned your business cards and other company documents, now could be the perfect time to take a hard look at your branding efforts. The logo that looked so new and cutting edge 10 years ago may be totally dated now. Those beautiful business cards you ordered a few years ago could probably use an upgrade to, as could your stationery and other business documents.
Your brand is an important part of your identity as a small business and it is important to give it the consideration it deserves. Your logo is often the first thing prospective customers see, you want to make that first impression a great one.
Network with Your Fellow Professionals
Companies do a great deal of business with other firms in the community, so it pays to get your name out there and meet your fellow entrepreneurs. Research professional organisations in your area, and join as many as you can. Networking with other business owners is one of the best ways to market your company and grow your client list.
Becoming involved with local charities can have much the same effect and make you feel good at the same time. Look for causes you believe in, then get yourself, your employees and your company involved. Charity is good for the soul and it could be good for business as well.
Generate Buzz – and Business – with a Promo or Giveaway
People love the chance to win a prize and running a promotion or contest can be a great way to generate excitement about your business. The prize does not have to be large or extravagant, a simple gift certificate promo can do wonders for your business and bring new customers through your doors.
Giving out multiple small prizes often works better than awarding one large prize. Giving away many different items increases the odds that a new customer will win and become a loyal customer. Awarding many different prizes also enhances the excitement of the promotion and may cause people to hang around longer in hopes of hearing their names called.
By placing focus on these three inexpensive activities you may find that your brand reputation is lifted and your business is fresher and more exciting to prospective customers.