How to market your small business with a tiny budget
If you’re a small business, then you know very well what a pain setting your marketing budget can be. There’s a lot to do but no expense to spare!
We understand your dilemma and know how to resolve it as well.
The thing about small businesses is that they need to be creative with the way they market themselves - a skill that takes time and effort to develop.
Let us help you out with some of our best strategies for small business marketing.
10 practical marketing ideas for small businesses
1. Write your business pitch
Whether you call it a business or elevator pitch isn’t important. What is important is that you spend time writing your business pitch and then perfecting it. Some tips to help guide you:
● Keep it short
● Get to the point immediately
The best thing is elevator pitches don’t cost you anything but can make all the difference for the consumer. A good pitch should generate curiosity in the listener about your product/service - and prompt engaging, useful questions.
2. Research your community of customers
Unlike big corporations, small businesses know exactly where their customers are. This makes studying the market easier for them.
When you know where your consumers are, it’s easier to create effective campaigns targeting specific groups only - for example, a library, event, or festival. In case you are clueless about the market you are in, do a small survey to get to know the region first.
Do your study and learn the four P’s of marketing while you’re at it!
3. Create a Community of Local Businesses
You’re not the only one with a small scale and trouble marketing your business. Other businesses that serve as part of your supply chain or are otherwise linked can get together and put together their resources for common needs.
Why not get together with fellow businesses in your region and come up with ways to cross-promote all your businesses?
4. Good old networking
The proven strategy of networking never fails - it’s important to always keep your feelers out for potential connections that can seriously scale your business.
What’s better than getting together with people and sharing your thoughts, ideas, strategies to help each other out?
5. Use your expertise to promote your business
If you’re in a niche industry, then you could make use of your knowledge to help market your business. Organizations are always bringing in experts to talk and discuss subjects trending in society - everywhere from business seminars to university courses offer the chance for a promotional talk or discussion.
While bringing up the courage to make a public speech isn’t for everyone, it can be a great way to put your business in the spotlight and for free too!
You can even get ahead of the competition by using vlogs or podcasts to reach loyal customer bases - both of which are very cheap to get started with.
6. Engage your customers
When you’re gathering contact data from your customers, make sure you use it well. Stay connected to your customers with information and updates that will benefit them. This way, customers will instantly know where to go when they need a service you offer.
You can try email, SMS, or even social media marketing to do this.
After a good service, ask your customers for referrals. Referrals are known to be one of the best forms of marketing.
7. Put some work into your social profiles
What is the first place your customers will be looking you up? Online, of course!
That’s why you should plan how you wish to appear on your social profiles. Or else, you’ll be losing customers because they don’t think your profile is authentic. Make sure to update all your images with hi-res photos or graphics, and take the effort to maintain at least a simple, regular content schedule.
Your social media is also the one place where you can market your business at no cost. You can also easily scale this through paid ads, down the line.
8. Make use of online ads
Google AdWords or Facebook Ads are a brilliant tool in your pocket. Their service is cost-effective and puts your business where your customers are.
9. Know what not to do
It is important to know what to do. However, it is more crucial to know what you mustn't do.
Since you’re a small business, your consumer base is small. Therefore, you must make fewer mistakes and learn from the mistakes of others.
10. Events, coupons, and offers
If you’re a new business with little exposure to the local community you are based in, you could try hosting an event.
Events, giveaways, offers, or coupons are a great way to bring in people and they don’t require you to put too much money into the marketing either - provided you plan them well.
Make sure the local population is attracted to what you’re offering, and the event will market itself by word-of-mouth.
These marketing strategies will work even better if you have a detailed business growth strategy plotted out.
We hope our marketing ideas for small businesses give you some clarity on what you can do for your business. Not all these ideas might apply to your business, but some can lead the way towards an effective and budget-friendly marketing campaign.
So, get your thinking caps on and brainstorm these ideas into something customized for your unique business.
To learn how our payment solutions can help you run your business more efficiently, schedule a free consultation with our merchant services team today.