For every small business owner, whether a first time entrepreneur or an experienced business executive, making the regular checks and balances concerning budget and business growth is a necessity. However, this often proves difficult for new businesses, especially when the operating cost are high, overhead expenses are on the increase, and you are yet to enjoy your own stake in the market while working to build customer loyalty. When matters such as these come up, the marketing section of the business often takes its first spending punch.
When push comes to shove and the funds allocated for marketing begin to diminish, you can always use some low to no-cost marketing tactics to keep your business going.
1. Professional Business Cards
Business cards serve as a very important tool when it comes to marketing your business anywhere you go. However, very few small business owners make it a point of duty to invest in this prime marketing tool. Design some professional looking business cards and take a couple along with you everywhere you go. Do not fail to hand your business card to anybody who shows interest in your business or when you find yourself at a gathering or event with lots of potential customers. In fact, every friendly handshake and a few minutes chit-chat should be accompanied with a business card.
2. Team Up With Other Businesses
Another low cost business marketing tactic you can also use to score some extra points for your business, involves partnering with another business that is related to your niche or industry for a joint project. However, you must endeavor NOT to partner with a direct competitor or another business that provides a substitute for your products and services. When you partner with another industry-relevant business, you get the opportunity to be introduced to a whole new set audience related to your niche.
Related: Low-Cost Content Marketing Ideas
3. Create Consumer Guides
Creating instructive consumer guides around the niche your business serves is also another effective low cost marketing tactic every business owner should make use of when looking for a cost efficient means of marketing their business. Ensure the consumer guide is of high quality, and focuses on making the reader aware of the benefits of using your product or service, without making it seem like it’s a self-promotion guide. Brand it, and distribute the guide throughout the community in every way possible. You can also place it on your website for free download.
4. Sending Out Personalized Letters
Sending a typed or handwritten personalized letter through the traditional post office route can have exceptionally good return on cost investment and time. The concept behind using the low cost marketing tactics involves compiling a small but high profile list of existing and prospective clients or customers and sending them personalized mails. Asides from servicing as a means of telling your existing clients that you still have them in your thoughts, it will help you earn their trust and they will recommend you to others
5. Become Active in the Community
Every entrepreneur or business owner is a member of a community or lives in a particular neighborhood. Serving the community where you live or where your business is domiciled is also among the top low cost marketing tactics first time entrepreneurs can employ. Taking part in community volunteer programs or charity events is a superb way of generating awareness about your business and its products or services. The more you are known for your good works and charitable gestures, the more people would be interested about you and your business. You’d be surprised how quick community members would be willing to recommend your business to anyone at every given opportunity.
6. Make Use of Empty Storefronts
If you’ve had time to drive round your neighborhood, you would have noticed several empty storefronts in your area or along other commuting routes. Approach the store owners about advertising your business in the windows pending the time they get a tenant. This is another highly efficient low cost marketing tactic you can use to enjoy some prime advertising space at very cheap rates when compared to the costs of using billboards.
7. Turn Your Car Into An Ad Tool
This is among the low cost marketing tactics many small business owners have been using to score some valuable advertising points for their business. The idea about this strategy is simply to print stickers about your business and place them on your car or attach magnetic signs on different parts of your car to build awareness about your business as you drive around town. Many people tend to search for distractions around whenever they are stuck in traffic and you bumper stickers or magnetic signs may just be what catches their interest.
8. Provide Free and Customized Balloons at Local Events
Another very efficient low cost marketing idea you can use to sell your products or services is to give away customized balloons at local events in your community. If for example your community intends to hold a fund raiser or charity meeting, get a few hundred customized balloons printed with your business name, hire a helium tank and get to work filling up the balloons at the event. You can never know where a single balloon with your business name boldly branded on it will get to.
9. Word of Mouth
There’s no other marketing strategy that is cheaper, stronger and much more efficient than word-of-mouth recommendation. Provide your customers with superb service and experience and they will tell their friends, family, and anyone who cares to listen about your business. The remarkable thing about word of mouth marketing is that it’s completely stress free and won’t cost you a dime. Word of mouth definitely fits into our Top 10 low cost marking ides for small business owners.
10. Become a Walking Billboard
Putting on a uniform or branded T-shirt with your logo and slogan on it is another professional way of increasing your awareness and get your business noticed by a lot of people. When you think of the number of people you pass by each day, becoming a walking billboard is definitely among the low cost marketing tactics first time entrepreneurs should consider