As a business owner, by now you should at least be aware of just how important marketing and advertising is for you. But advertising your small home business by buying a 30-second TV spot may not be the wisest thing to do because the cost can be rather prohibitive. And some of the other methods which may cost thousands of dollars may not fit your budget either.
Fortunately for you, there are cheaper alternative ways of marketing and advertising your products/services without having to spend an insane amount of cash.
Claim your local online listing
A lot of people go online to find products and services they need, so obviously you need a website of your own. But your online efforts shouldn’t stop there. At the very least, you should make sure you’re listed in Google Places, and also in Yahoo Local and Bing Local. It’s a free service, so you don’t spend anything except for a little time and effort.
Update your website with fresh content
A blog is one of those useful website features that can help your business become more trusted and prominent online. Your posts can offer helpful articles that may show up in Google searches, and the fresh content also helps your website’s SEO. You can also respond to comments and questions to foster deeper relationships with potential customers who can spread the word about your business.
Volunteer in your community
If you look closer in your local community, you’ll find several non-profit institutions engaged in some sort of charity work which you can take part of. Or you can sponsor a local sports team. This kind of helpfulness boosts your company’s visibility, and it also builds your reputation for good work.
Answer questions in industry forums
Just about every industry has a website forum dedicated to it, and many of these forums have members with questions they want to ask experts. If you’re a subject matter expert, you can provide the answer. That boosts your authority, and a link to your website in your comment or in your signature can direct some readers to your website.
If you’re starting a new business, you ought to tell all your friends and family members about it. The best way to do that is through Facebook. And your friends can then share your posts to their friends as well.
Printed material may not seem hi-tech, but for local businesses they can actually be very effective. The good thing is they don’t really cost much. It’s easy enough to design and print the flyers yourself, and you can hire high school kids to distribute them in parking lots and homes in the neighborhoods.
Quite a lot of people take advantage of coupons, and by offering these to customers who have already made a purchase you can encourage them to come back.
Tap other bloggers
Reviewing your own products in your own website may seem biased, but it’s a different story when other bloggers review your products for you. Identify your potential customers and find the bloggers who specialize in your niche e. Then you can contact them and see if they’re willing to review your product if you send them a sample. The fee for this type of service is usually low, and some bloggers even do it free of charge.
Not every method listed here may work for your business, but at least it won’t cost you an arm and a leg to find out. And some of these methods may work for you, in which case you get to grow your business without spending a lot of money for it.