While there are plenty of different ways to market your business online, some of these methods can be expensive. Companies operating on a limited budget, or perhaps even those without a marketing budget of any kind, can still make their mark on the Internet and reach out to new potential customers. These six tips sum up the most effective online marketing techniques for companies on a limited budget.
1. Create Meaningful and Worthwhile Content
Whether your marketing budget is a few dollars or a few million, the first rule should always be to create meaningful content. If you’re an expert in your field or industry, whatever that may be, then you are the perfect person to create worthwhile content. Start a blog for your business that discusses things a niche market might truly be interested in. If you sell running shoes, review popular brands or discuss how to get the right fit. If you provide IT services, write articles on how to better protect a computer from hackers or talk about how secure cloud computing really is. Helpful, well-written content that you create yourself doesn’t have to cost a thing, but your time will be well worth it if the information gets shared and appreciated by your target demographic.
2. Make and Share Helpful Videos
Many small businesses are under the misconception that videos have to have a high production value and be created by film professionals in order to be successful. Thankfully, that is definitely not the case. If you have a smartphone, simply place it on a level surface and film yourself reviewing a product or offering advice about a product or service. For a home maintenance company, for example, a video about how to eliminate ants in the home might be suitable. You can post these videos on social media as well as YouTube for absolutely no expense whatsoever.
3. Make Infographics That Can Go Viral
An infographic is a single image that contains interesting statistics, a flow chart or any other collection of details interesting enough to be shared. Generally, the data is accompanied by colorful images to make the whole thing more visually appealing. Free infographic templates are available online if you don’t have much in the way of design skills, but you’ll need to collect your own data that you think could be interesting to your niche market.
4. Host a Contest
An online content is an incredibly effective way of getting people to like your social media profiles, share content and provide information for email marketing campaigns in the future. Rafflecopter is an online service that protects the identity of entrants while making the whole process easier for you. Make some of the entries things like liking your company’s Facebook page, following your company on Twitter or tagging a friend on Instagram. Make the prize something appealing but something you can offer at a low cost that is representative of your business and your industry.
5. Volunteer and Wow at Local Events
Online marketing can and should intersect with local marketing in some instances. For example, there might be a local 5k race held in your town. Offer to man one of the aid stations or take photos of runners, and then share the photos on social media after the fact. Runners will love being able to access free photos from the race, handing out water to grateful runners will improve your brand image and you’re bound to get new followers on social media who want to stay informed of any other community events or races being held in the future.
6. Stay Active on Social Media
Social media shouldn’t be a tool you utilize every few days when it is convenient. Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn are free platforms, so make the most of what they offer. Use hashtags relevant to your business, post daily on multiple platforms whenever possible and ask questions of your audience. Don’t forget to answer questions and interact with anyone starting a conversation as well.
Having a limited budget definitely doesn’t mean you have to limit your online marketing campaign. These six online marketing tips above can absolutely be powerful and effective. While they require time and effort, most won’t cost you a penny.