Customers are the key to survival and no matter what industry or community you are in, if you hope to ever find any measure of success, you must advertise your business. A variety of online and offline advertising options are available, so that you do not need to have a large marketing staff or budget to build your brand and customer base.
The number of disparate advertising options available can be difficult to slog through. Finding the right combinations of choices for your company will depend on a variety of factors. Some advertising solutions will require constant attention and care, while others can be taken care of during your day-to-day, requiring only a small amount of effort by you or your employees. It is important to consider how much time you have for these projects and how many new skills and programs you are willing to learn and invest that time into. To garner the largest return on this investment, you may wish to minimize the number of different methods that you use. Review this article to discover some of the best free marketing solutions for your business.
Build connections with people and businesses in your community to strengthen and grow your reputation and customer base. When you tell people about your business and services, you have the opportunity to reinforce your desired brand image, while also making connections with potential customers and partners. You can make a special point of networking by joining local business organizations like your Chamber of Commerce, or you can simply let people know about your business during your regular day-to-day.
- Social Media
Social media has become virtually synonymous with online marketing. There are tons of different networks, but not every network will be effective for every business. Because maintaining these accounts will take time and effort, finding the right networks for your business is necessary to find success in your social media campaigns.
For example, if you run a B2B service, Instagram may be ineffective, but LinkedIn may help you find the right audience. However, some businesses may be difficult to connect with on LinkedIn, while Facebook and Twitter provide that connection instead. The best way to find out which networks will work for you are to first research, then make your choices through trial and error.
- Local Media
Contact local newspapers, radio stations, and television networks with information about your business. If you send the right information to the right people, one or many of these outlets may do a feature on your business, helping you to build your local brand reputation.
- Online Classifieds
Resources such as Craigslist, Backpage, and Kijiji allow you to post and view advertisements for free. Like social media networks, these options may not be ideal for certain types of businesses or certain communities. Be sure to only invest your time in the advertising solutions that will be effective for you.
- Online Presence
There is more to online marketing than your social media presence. Your website and blog and the SEO and SEM methods that you employ will all have an effect on your ability to connect with the right customers. While most of the best methods of improving your online presence do cost money, hundreds of free website options and tools are available. The marketing opportunities afforded by the internet are likely being utilized in effective ways by your competitors, so it would be foolish to overlook these methods.
If you impress your customers, they mention your services to friends or colleagues. To encourage these referrals, you may wish to offer discounts or deals to customers who refer new clients.
- Directory Listings
Online directories and review listings, such as clutch.co and Capterra, allow customers to see reviews of your services, compare your services with competitors, view your pricing and options, and more. Some directories are industry-specific or have paid-only options.