Many new business owners assume they need to hire a team of marketing professionals and have a considerable marketing budget to get desirable results but this isn’t always true.
Marketing is a science. With a bit of strategic planning and time, you can build a marketing strategy that works even on a tight budget.
This post will talk about some of the most important steps a small business owner can take to get the results they’re looking for without a significant dent on their budget. So, let’s get right into it!
Build a solid marketing plan
Everything starts with a plan. And the best way to ensure that your marketing efforts are effective (and you’re not wasting your money) is to create a detailed plan.
It doesn’t have to include everything but should at least look at a few major areas and must include important details about what service/product you provide, who your target audience is, who your direct competitors are, and how you compare to them.
Laying down a plan will help you analyze and better understand the most effective way to market your business to your desired audience and figure out which social platforms, media outlets, and events you should be focusing on.
It’s also essential to regularly re-assess your marketing strategy to detect the areas that aren’t achieving the desired results. When operating on a tight budget, it’s crucial to cut initiatives that aren’t working and to utilize the funds somewhere else.
Remember, when you’re on a tight budget, you can’t afford to shoot in the dark.
Utilize free brand awareness methods
Public relations (PR) activities are not usually given enough importance by up-and-coming businesses, but they can be really helpful in boosting brand awareness.
There are many different aspects to digital PR marketing; for instance, you can ask your previous clients to write testimonials and reviews for you. Or you can ask for their permission to appear in a case study on how your service or product helped them. Remember, customers trust each other more than any business.
If you’re launching a new product, you should consider writing a press release to announce the launch. However, it’s important to realize that there can be a lot involved in creating a press release and it’s a daunting task for many – make sure you know how to best approach it, with your industry in mind.
There are a number of websites and industry publications that your target audience reads, and sending relevant news and press releases to these outlets can help you get your message across to prospective customers.
Generate new leads using “Pay Per Click” advertising
A good marketing strategy will always include lead generation and advertising at its center. Online advertising offers a cost-efficient and expandable way of generating new business leads.
Google is the most famous “Pay Per Click” (PPC) advertising platform, and you can use it to get significant results even on a small budget.
Google Adwords makes use of a bidding system for specific keywords you want your ad to appear against. The best thing about this form of lead generation? You only have to pay a fee if your advertisement is clicked through by someone who has searched for that specific keyword.
If you’re unsure about the keywords to use, then consider using tools like SEMRush to give you some much-needed keyword recommendations and insight based on your business and website.
Lastly, to get the most out of your PPC spend, try aligning it to the content already published on your business website instead of creating content specifically for a Google Adwords campaign.
Create valuable content for inbound marketing
The main goal of inbound marketing is to encourage potential clients and prospects to contact you about your business rather than going out of your way to find and pull them in.
Unlike outbound marketing, inbound strategies can be created and left in place. In other words, they tend to be more passive. They’re also easy to automate and might cost less than outbound marketing, which is why they save your life when you’re on a tight budget.
Although many different areas can make up a strong inbound marketing strategy, you should always focus on creating a solid content plan first and foremost.
The purpose of publishing value-driven content should be to educate your target audience, generate leads, and build a reputation in the industry.
Creating content and blogs that have real value to clients, are helpful, and address your target audience’s pain points builds brand credibility and establishes you as an expert on a subject. This can apply to both B2C and B2B markets.
Once you build a solid audience, you can use this as an opportunity to ask for their email addresses to build a mailing list for email marketing.
Try email marketing
Once you’ve built a decent-sized list of contacts, you can use email tools to send out marketing emails with relevant and personalized content.
Because most prospects aren’t likely to purchase what you have to offer on first contact, it’s better to set up an automated sequence of emails to take your prospects through the buyer’s journey.
A well thought out email marketing strategy allows you to send emails at pre-planned intervals, keeping potential customers warm and providing multiple chances for them to act on your call to action.
Emails are cheaper and easier to send (vs cold calling), which is why they’re a good idea when you have a small budget.