Many companies skimp on their marketing campaigns in an effort to save a few pounds here and there. Truth is, marketing does not have to be expensive, and rather than costing you money, it can actually help you to make more money in the long run.
If your small or medium sized business could do with getting the word out there, without breaking the bank, here are some of our favourite free marketing techniques:
Make you mark on social media
Social media is an online conversation that lets you shout about your business for free! Once you have your own Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages set up and ready to go, you can use these to attract new followers, and hopefully, new customers. Social media gives your business a way to engage with your target audience that is virtually impossible on any other traditional marketing platform.
To get new customers interested you could run online competitions and encourage them to like or share your page for a chance to win something from your inventory. Or you could simply use your social media pages as a reference site, providing your audience with useful hints and tips on related products and services. Remember to keep all of your social media accounts regularly updated, and make the most of automated posting using tools like Hootsuite to schedule all of your posts in one go.
Test the power of testimonials
If your clients are happy with the service they have received from you, ask them to share a review or testimonial. These can be added to your website, or posted on your social media pages. You can even add your business to online review sites that can easily be found on Google or other search engines. A good review speaks volumes, so don’t forget to share them with the world.
Reward your customers loyalty
Most of us have wallets full of loyalty cards from major High Street stores. Don’t let the size of your operation deter you from joining in the fun. You can create basic loyalty cards that reward customers with a free gift or money off their next purchase. Simple but effective, loyalty schemes will encourage your customers to keep coming back to your business.
If you have a happy customer who tells their friends and family about your services, they are marketing your business for free. Why not reward them for their kindness? Many companies offer incentive schemes for recommending a friend with rewards including money off vouchers, or free products or services.
Become a source of information
Blog pages and posts are an awesome way of increasing your exposure in this media savvy day and age. Blogs can be designed to offer readers hints and tips, as well as helpful resources. If a customer trusts your word, they will read your blog and rely on your business as a preferred point of reference within your industry. Remember to update your blogs frequently though, so you stay on top of your game.
Don’t forget about your staff
The people that work for you probably promote your business far more than you have noticed. Whether they tell their friends what a great job they have, or wax lyrical about how great your products or services are, every time they say something nice about you that are spreading the word about your business. If you treat them well, they will continue to speak highly of you. You could even devise an incentive scheme for you staff members who bring in new customers.
Get involved in local networking
Even if you sell goods to a wider area, your local business community is an excellent source of free marketing tools. Visit local business events to promote your brand, or get involved with your local Chamber of Commerce or small business association to spread the word about your business.
Business cards for easy advertising
Business cards may seem a little old fashioned, but they still play an important part in promoting your business. Always give one out to any potential customers or clients you have dealings with. Go the extra mile and make sure they are interesting to look at, and contain all the relevant information. Get creative and tell the world how great you are.
Why not try some of these ideas to increase your marketing strategies for free. Let us know how you get on, or perhaps you have other free marketing ideas that have worked for you? Let us know.