Advertising and marketing is often the most neglected aspect of a small business. Business owners are so busy serving customers and taking care of their employees that they sometimes forget to toot their own horn. A big challenge in business is growing and attracting new customers while also taking care of the loyal ones you already have. Advertising doesn’t have to cost a fortune or take up a ton of your time, though. Many marketing tools online are free or low-cost, and you can also utilize your existing customers to help spread the word about your business.
Below are 4 simple, low-cost ideas:
Establish a Social Presence
If you can’t afford a website, set up a free Facebook page and consider other social media accounts like Instagram, Twitter or LinkedIn. These will show up in an online search and are a great way to relay information to existing and potential customers. You can also try email marketing through services like Constant Contact and Mailchimp, or run an online advertising campaign where you get to set the budget. Not sure how to do any of that? Talk to your local university about getting an intern to help.
Get Customer Referrals
Your existing customers who love your business are your best advocates. Ask them to tell their friends and family about you. You could even create an incentive program where they get some type of reward (a free product or service) for referring other customers. Having an online social presence will also give them a way to review, share and tout your business.
Go the Traditional Route
Don’t discount traditional print, radio and TV. Ask your local newspaper if it has a special advertising section related to your industry. Cable TV companies and radio stations also offer smaller-budget options, and radio stations do live remotes from local businesses. If that’s still something you can’t afford, pitch local media the idea of interviewing you as an expert for an editorial story.
Thinking outside the box can get your business noticed in a different way. Advertising at the local movie theater, sponsoring a filter through Snapchat, creating a parade float or setting up a booth at a local event or festival will help you reach new customers and position your business as fresh, fun and creative.
MidSouth Bank offers many services, from checking and savings accounts to direct deposit and business loans, to help grow your small business. Learn More
**Sharing information from an outside source does not constitute an endorsement of the source. Some linked sites are not controlled by MidSouth Bank