Promoting and advertising are ongoing challenges for small business owners. What is the best way to promote? How can you do an advertisement? How can you reach thousands of potential prospects? How to plan with limited financial resources? You might find these are more than effective when you are on a shoestring budget. Find the list of most effective low-cost (almost no-cost) ways to promote your business here.
40 Low-Cost Ways To Promote Your Small Business
1. Create a Marketing Plan
Craft the marketing plan first. Identify your niche audience. Fix the best way to reach them. Are they available on social media platforms or any in-person local business gatherings? Put it down on the paper and start planning.
2. Logo & Catchline
You must create a decent logo for your brand. Craft a memorable catchline. These are several free tools available online. If you don’t want to hire a graphic designer, check the free tools.
3. Business Stationaries
Create your business stationeries like letterhead, business cards, envelopes, etc. The items must have a professional look. You can create the design yourself. Check it out here.
4. Create Website
You must have a website. You can also do it in a cost-effective manner. You can have a free website from free website builder platforms.
5. Have a Blog
This is the most powerful way to reach your clients. Have a blog with relevant and useful content.
6. Post Frequently
Regularly post content that meets the needs and interests of your target audience. Post frequently. It will keep your site dynamic.
7. Refresh Contents
Recycle your content with new data. You can rehash your old content into new creations as well. You can come up with a new post by combining some old posts altogether.
8. List Your Business
Google and Bing both offer free listing for local businesses. To get listed on Google, go to Google My Business. To get listed on Bing, go to Bing Places for Business. Yahoo charges for local listings, but you get listed on a lot more than Yahoo if you buy their service. This service is called Yahoo Localworks.
Create slide presentations. Upload it to SlideShare. This is most effective for service-based businesses.
Create a Facebook group with your business objective. Put some effort into promoting it.
Create some ‘How To’ videos that meet customer’s solutions. Upload it on YouTube Channel.
12. Email Newsletter
Create an email list of your customers. Send an email newsletter and/or promotional offers to customers and prospects for your business. Ask for permission to send the email before putting any person’s email name on your list.
13. Video Message
Send a video message to your prospect on Facebook. It’s very simple. Just use your webcam.
14. Attend Trade Shows
Attend trade shows and business meets. The local networking event will keep you aware of the industry happening. Boost your profile at trade shows and business meets.
Take the membership of different groups that attract your target audience. Pay for it. It’s worth it. Make sure your name and contact information are there.
16. Media Kit
Create a media kit. Send it to the local media houses. Editorial features convey more credibility with prospective clients than paid advertising does.
17. Get Reviews
Find bloggers to review your products and services. An honest review is a powerful tool to get customer’s faith.
18. Create a Pinterest Profile
Pinterest is best for consumer product businesses. Clothing, fashion, beauty, entertainment, design, photography, food, jewelry, or a similar lifestyle-niche business are perfect for image sharing on Pinterest.
19. Guest Post
Accept guest posts on your blog and get free user-generated content and make friends in your niche.
Infographics are very powerful tools. People love to share eye-catchy and easy-to-understand infographics. It’s easy and relatively cheap when you can find a lot many infographic-making tools on the internet.
Do some online surveys. You can host it on your blog. You can do it with a free WordPress plugin WP-Polls to manage results.
22. Free consulting
Find out what federal, state, and local government programs are there to help you get started in the business.
23. Offer Free Consultation
Regardless you are in a product or service business offer a free consultation. Talk to the people you think could use your services. During consultations offer practical suggestions and pieces of advice. Before leaving ask for an order.
24. Vehicle Advertising
While using a car or truck in your business, have your business name and contact information professionally painted on the side of the vehicle.
25. Create a Twitter Profile
Twitter is one of the most powerful social platforms. Provide useful tweets regular basis. Don’t over-promote your company.
26. Develop a Referral program
Create a referral program. It’s an old idea, but a hugely effective one.
Donate to a local organization or a national charity and get exposure on their donor’s page and potentially a link back to your site.
28. Offer Affiliate
If you are selling a digital product (like an ebook), set up an affiliate program with a service like E-junkie.
Host an event, party, or conference for a bigger cause you care about. That puts you in the position of getting to know lots of people. It shows off your small-business leadership skills. It helps in brand awareness.
Sampling is a great way of launching any product or service. Get samples of your product or your work into as many hands as possible.
Host free webinars on your site. Generally, the service is costly. However, there are companies that offer free or low-cost options for small business owners. Some cheap options are WebinarsOnAir (starting at $19.97/month) or MeetCheap (starting at $9.97/month). If you are looking for an even cheaper option, Google Hangouts On Air absolutely free.
32. PPC Advertising
Test with PPC advertising. This is a great way of driving traffics. However, closely monitor how much you are getting compared with your spending.
33. Yelp Advertizing
Yelp is very much effective in local advertising. It’s free and can be a great way to increase your visibility in search engines.
34. Offer On Social Media
Share valuable information with your social media followers. It helps to become a trusted expert in your industry. Offer ‘Free’ and ‘Deals’. This is still the No 1 reason people like a brand on Facebook.
It’s helpful in trust-building. Give customer success stories or testimonials on your site.
36. Personalized Gift
Give personalized and customized gifts to your clients. Offer hand-printed pottery items like a coffee mug with your company name and contact information. You will find online gift sites like Vistaprint for finding suitable gift items.
37. Loyalty Discounts
It works like anything. Reward your long-term customers with loyalty discounts. Buy one, get one free is a tried and tested method of encouraging short-term repeat sales.
38. Comment On Blogs
Leave thoughtful comments on blogs you follow. It can be a great way to get noticed by both the blog owners and their visitors.
39. Make Customer Feel Special
Customers respond to being recognized. Even with a web-based business, good customer service is possible.
40. Give Thank You Messages
Give your clients hand-written thank you notes. It is an immensely effective tool among low-cost ways to promote your business.
Here we have given 40 low-cost ways to promote your business. We hope you will find these tips helpful to promote your business. especially, when you are on a low advertisement budget.
About the Author: 99businessideas.com led by Rupak Chakrabarty is committed to helping beginners, entrepreneurs, and small business owners in starting, managing, and growing their business. Our aim is to educate the entrepreneur on the various stages of entrepreneurship.