All great advice in the StrongSocial.ca article. Researching your market is a big one and although the cost is $0, you need to know what you don't know in order to research. What is your offering? To whom is it targeted? Where is your target market best reached? What is the price-point for your product or service? And so on and so on. I definitely like to do this as if it were a project and document my results - it is something my entrepreneurship course will be doing at Wagner College Office for Lifelong Learning. This piece of the business plan is so important and can so often be overlooked. You get an idea and you just want to run with it and stopping to do this can feel like "work" - it can feel like something you might have done as an undergraduate but that does not make it any less important - it must be done. Severe missteps can take place if you do not do this research plus having it done adds value to your business because if you spent the time to think and plan, you will be that much more closer to success.
Turning email into a marketing campaign is something I am looking at building out - when you are a new company, you do not have always have a list of customers (potential or otherwise). I am building out my email list by offering some premium content to people if they register and other ideas to help build this out. Constant Contact offers a free 60 day trial and they also have some awesome tools you can use to create material to help build out your database of potential customers and people who just want to hear from your company.
Also having a mobile version of your website is important and some web hosting services automatically will make a mobile version (such as Weebly). And a great tool I have on this website is the chat feature - it is integrated into the site and can be used by any visitor to reach and chat with either me or my delegate.
SEO (search engine optimization) is also so important - having that research to know your keywords and to have them in place on your page will help and there are services out there to help (for different budgets) to make sure your business shows up on search pages. This is something I did with a lower-cost provider recently to make sure my business page shows up and that my contact information is there. I will let you all know how it goes.
This article talks about advertising on Facebook and LinkedIn. For me, I love using Facebook and Twitter marketing campaigns - it is super easy to do and quantifiable for end results - in addition, the budgeting for it is easy because you chose how much to spend per day and over how many days. It helps create some buzz for my new company and it does not break my bank / budget for advertising.
Informal (or formal) partnerships are another great way to build your business marketing plan. I am so happy to be partnering with Wagner College Office for Lifelong Learning to offer a course to teach you how to execute on these and other marketing and entrepreneurship plans via the course Entrepreneurship: Building Your Own Business. Find out more below.
What do you think about these ways to market your small business for less than $100? I have used some of these techniques and I am happy with my marketing plan - have you? The best thing I ever did was the initial marketing research to identify and manage my plan. Happy Hunting!
StrongSocial.ca 6 Ways to Market Your Small Business for less than $100
Lisa Vento Nielsen