How to promote your business on a tight budget. Get tips and insights into the marketing techniques and strategies you can take to grow you brand.
Starting out as a small business can seem like an overwhelming task especially being up against big players with hefty marketing budgets. But hey, everybody’s got to start somewhere right? Likewise, you can also check out this article by Hobpost, which has a comprehensive guide on the the list of digital marketing tools for every small business.
In this blog, we will go through several low budget marketing strategies, for any startup or SME, that will help your brand climb the corporate ladder and expand to the masses.
1. Google Ad Campaigns
As a small business, paid google ad campaigns (SEM) are a great start to your marketing plan. The good thing about Google ads is that it is extremely flexible where Google enables you to control your daily budget, pause and resume your campaign whenever you feel like it. Google recommends starting your daily budget small at US$10 to US$50 per campaign.
Google Ads Tips:
- Find easy to rank keywords – using online keyword tools such as Spyfu and Ahrefs, search for keywords that have an average difficulty rank of 30 or less and a keyword volume of at least 1000 per month. After identifying your keywords, use them to draft your ad copies.
- Piggyback off your competitors – search for specific ad copies and successful keywords of your competitors and use them to create an effective campaign.
- Ensure the words on your landing page match your ad copy
Monitor your campaign data – CTR, conversions, impressions and conversion rate everyday and pause any ads that do not seem to be providing sufficient results.
Additional Resource: Here’s a list of the best keyword research tools that you can use to research on your PPC keywords.
2. Work on SEO
Another side of digital marketing is your search engine optimization (SEO). SEO marketing is the process of optimising your website so as to increase organic traffic. The more relevant and usable your site is, the higher your search engine rank becomes and the more your site is seen.
Some basic must-dos to boost your SEO rank include:
- Posting relevant content – Blogs are a great way to increase your SEO. Based on high keyword searches, create blogs that your site visitors would want to read about. Most importantly, include links back to your website within the blog post.
- Fresh and constantly updated website – Search engines like Google also take note of how often you upload new content and make improvements to your website.
- Website usability – this includes everything from using proper headings, ease of navigation within the website and font size, to available site links and page load speed.
- Contactability – how easily your users can communicate feedback, ask for help or send emails to the company is also a crucial indicator of relevancy.
Social Media Traffic – growing your social media following increases the traffic from social platforms and boosts your SEO rank.
- You – Our brain is activated by hearing or thinking of ourselves, so making use of the word ‘You’ would make the ad feel and look hyper-personalized.
- Free – A highly valued word as humans are always looking out for free stuff!
- Because – A study featured in Harvard Magazine has shown that when we are offered a reason with ‘because’, we are more likely to be persuaded. 64% of participants were persuaded without ‘because’ vs 94% with ‘because’.
- Instantly or now – It is backed up by brains scans: when we get offered something instantly, our brains go crazy!
- New – It helps to re-energise your brand and create a more refreshing image in your customers’ minds.
3. Sponsor an Event
Sponsoring specific events is an excellent way for you to get your brand out. Working within a small budget means you have to start small. This means small scale events such as school camps, charity events or local competitions – depending on your target audience. Even if it was just offering a 20% voucher to a few hundred participants or providing several free portions of your food products, event sponsorship is the fastest way to get your brand name out to crowds of people.
4. Attend Events
Paying $1000 for a booth at a startup convention may seem like a risky investment. However, this is almost always a worthy investment so long as you go with a goal in mind and a steadfast attitude to succeed. Start up events not only help you find new investors and collaborators but also give you the rare opportunity to get a broad overview of the uprising small business scene. Take this opportunity to collect as many business cards as possible and ensure you follow up with every single one. Here’s a list of scheduling tools that you can make use of to arrange meetings.
And when you are attending event, do be sure to bring along your business cards too! Print Peppermint is a great place where you can get all your business cards printed and delivered to you.
5. Social Media
Managing your social media platforms frequently and doing it well is extremely important for small businesses. If you have a larger marketing budget, you can consider using paid ads on social media through Instagram, Facebook, Linkedin, Pinterest…
Social Media Tips for SMEs:
- Use Video Marketing – Marketers who use video grow revenue 49% faster than non-video users.
- Keep your videos short – Videos that received the most comments on Instagram. averaged at 26 seconds. Meanwhile, Facebook recommends your video ads to be 15 seconds or shorter.
- Post at least 3 times a week
- Make your posts stand out – unique graphics, eye-catching animations, bold tag lines, clear calls to action and emojis.
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6. Take Feedback Seriously
Building up a loyal customer base requires genuine interaction with your followers. Feedback should be collected from new time users, loyal customers and churned customers in order to determine a customer’s thought process at all stages. It is important for customers to feel like their feedback is of value. Therefore, analyse EVERY suggestion you receive and provide an updated response no matter how small the suggestion is.
7. Refer a Friend Promotion
Creating a referral rewards system is a cheap and effective way to get your loyal customers to market your brand for you. Your customers have unique insights into who in their social circle will benefit from your product or service. A referral program allows your customers to become your brand ambassadors, effectively advertising your brand to their friends and family. In fact, studies have shown that 77% of consumers are more likely to buy a new product when learning about it from friends or family.
Take a look at some good examples below: