21 Tips For Low-Cost Marketing
With 100 employees and $ 10 million in annual revenue, Cynergy Systems, a software developer in the U.S., applies techniques of effective and affordable advertising. Its founder and president Carson Hager, is blunt: “Actually the traditional means of marketing we do not work. Also, do not have a big budget for it.”
The lesson of Carson, 36, is simple: before starting an expensive advertising campaign, best considered more economical, but equally effective. Here are 21 tactics, which require a minimum investment or no-cost. And that surely will bring good results to you and your business.
1 Engage in social networks.
Apart from publishing a profile about your business on sites like Facebook, Linkedin and MySpace also have the option to create your group. The advantages of this tool is free and allows you to present your brand among a large number of people interested to visit such websites. Additionally, the name of your group will appear in the profile page of each user.
2 references Reward.
When customers of Choice Translating translation-an office in North Carolina, USA – recommend the services of this company to others, get a gift. “And best of all, every gift, which is a small hand-made craft does not cost more than $ 5 and people love it,” says Michelle Menard, member of the firm.
3 Create a blog.
This resource becomes more and more popularity. You can have your own blog for free on sites like WordPress.com or Blogger.com. “This is the perfect place to write comments related to your business,” says Hager. To increase traffic, participate in other blogs related to the topic you drive and includes in each of them a “link” to refer to the users to your blog.
Do not know how or do not have time? Wendy Kobler, founder of advertising firm Kobler Communications, suggests that you get in touch with bloggers in the industry in which you participate. These experts can advise you to become a ‘professional communication “online”. Or, have them write about your business in different spaces. Sometimes, bloggers get to have such a reputation that his name is recognized in the virtual world, therefore, his words go further than you can imagine.
4 Cultivate your relationship with your customers.
“Loyalty programs motivate consumers to return more often,” says Denise Dorman, public relations expert and founder of the firm WriteBrain Media. “It creates a space in your blog for customers to enter their data and immediately begin to receive exclusive promotions products.”
Rewarded with discounts and gifts to those who make more purchases. Remember that once you establish an emotional bond between your business and your customers, you will become a brand for them.
5 Speak up.
Kobler recommends that to let you know, participate as a speaker at trade shows, exhibitions and meetings of trade associations you belong. You can even organize an event on the premises of your business and invite your customers (and potential) to learn the different lines of products and services you sell. Also involve your suppliers to participate as sponsors. So everybody wins.
6 Distribute content.
The tools to deliver content and updates for free or investing a minimum amount of money, such as PRWeb.com, you can help promote your business “online”. Other free news services on the Internet are i-Newswire.com, and TheFreeLibrary.com Mininova.org. In Spanish, some options are Ambosmedios.com and Abastodenoticias.com. You choose which one suits you best.
7 Blast your information.
To streamline the operation of your restaurant salad Green Tango, Billy and Alissa Maupin began taking orders over the Internet and text messages. The result: satisfied diners addition, this system do help to understand the buying habits, the consumption volume and type of products most demanded by 4,000 clients registered in its database. With this information, entrepreneurs can calculate the amount of input they should buy, and measure the effectiveness of the promotions carried out.
8 Learn to send emails.
“Once you know what the buying patterns of your customers, thanks to the database you formed it, take advantage,” said Scott Cooper, marketing consultant. For example, Maupin reviewed the spending habits of customers placing orders over the Internet to design e-mails with special offers and promotions tailored to each.
9 Form a team of super sales.
Employees use Green Tango Restaurant shirts, hats, aprons and buttons with different messages about the brand. “When we launched a new product, we use the staff uniforms to promote it,” says Billy Maupin. But not all. They also train their col-ers to promote certain menu items. Tip: prepare all your employees to become experts in sales of your brand.
10 Make quality surveys.
Develop new advertising hook through opinion surveys. To do this, ask your customers what issues or topics of importance to them. Then use the results to publish (on your website or blog) A note related to what, precisely, offer your business. For example, maybe your audience will enjoy reading. Then you can advertise your coffee shop will soon have comfortable chairs and lighting perfect for spending some quality time reading a book.
11 Become a specialist.
The Maupin based menu design Green Tango in salads, “because as the saying warns: pick one thing and do it well,” Billy judgment. “Our goal is that the public knows us as the best in this specialty.” Therefore, it is best that you count on certifiques or recognition of any institution or association that endorses you as a prestigious business in a certain area.
12 Make the most of your resources.
For example, use your regular correspondence-whether via mail or electronically as an opportunity for advertising. It offers exclusive promotions each time you send a letter or e-mail to your customers. Be sure to include basic elements such as the logo of your business, so they are always present. Or, appends the “league” of your website or blog so that users have access to offers and special prices on some products or services you sell.
13 media Rental Products.
Enjoy the last months of the year to consult the editorial calendars for the next period of some media. “Generally, this information can be found on the website of the journals, whether in the” Media Kit “or” Advertise with us, “says Dorman. Learn what are the issues that address each source of information and sets a date limit to write a story relevant to your business (and that you feel could be published).
14 Compete for advertising and leverages.
When Green Tango was a finalist in the “Best Salad”, organized by the local newspaper, the Maupin took the opportunity to communicate the news: an e-mail sent to all customers. Remember that participate in competitions sponsored by the media, associations and institutions is an effective tool to promote your brand on a large scale.
15 Spread a video of your business.
A simple VCR is all you need to create videos about your company. Then upload them for free on YouTube, Google Video and other sites. Cynergy Systems recorded a single internal video to promote its program Cynergy Labs, which provides funding and support for employees to develop ideas and proposals. One of them sent the material by email to a friend. In just 10 minutes, the video was downloaded hundreds of times -214.000 times so far.
16 Write a story about your business.
If there is a relevant fact about your business, you should write something about it. A brief note is enough. The important thing is to make it known. But if a medium-to be newspaper, magazine or Web site, published the story using their own contacts, at least make sure you learn that you also wrote something related. In this way, come into the radar of the editor or producer as a source of information to take into account in future cases.
17 Use the Internet to your advantage.
Dorman believes that you should include your company’s web page on free sites that will help you increase your traffic, as Delicious.com, Digg.com, Squidoo.com and Yelp.com. “But the key is to get customers to your product or service will also promote there.” In addition, newspapers and local websites have free calendars “online” where you can advertise an event, anniversary celebration or related to your business.
18 Go out to search for your customers.
Menard, Choice Translating, took advantage of approaching Valentine’s Day to visit their clients, give them chocolates and express their good will. The gift was accompanied by a fun festival-related card, where requested references of potential new customers. Also, the enterprising sent a gift by mail to those who could not see personally. The effort resulted in an increase of $ 22,000 in sales within a month.
19 Take advantage of your location.
If you have a high profile local, ie it is ubi-market on a busy street or in a corner, do you expect to place ads on the front and thus draw the attention of people! Note: find out first what your local rules and processes about permits. Billy Maupin uses small ads that can be attached to the floor, requiring an investment of between $ 20 and $ 30 and are a good way to advertise seasonal promotions.
20 Taking into account the opinion of your customers.
Invite your customers to provide their comments on various points related to your business, from store design to advertising you did last season. They can also contribute ideas to develop new channels to keep in touch with them and to win more customers. Reward this support with a small gift or a special-to discounts.
21 Create strategic alliances.
Find out what other businesses, other than your direct competitors, are targeted to the same target market you serve and set forth to create a society that suits both parties. The Maupin is allied with a fitness center to promote its natural health products among customers concerned about eating a healthy diet. Thus, people who come to your training sessions you order before starting the class and, on completion, your meal is ready.