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By Allemande Berryman| 12/05/2017 4:01 PM

Marketing, when done right, can be cost efficient and conversion effective. Marketing can rack up an extensive bill and can prove to be relatively ineffectual. Don’t let complex marketing plans deplete your budget and energy! Here are just 8 ways to market your business on a budget.

Strong Website
Web design is the foundation of all smart marketing strategies in today’s marketplace. It’s your virtual brick and mortar, the place every single customer and prospect will visit before making a purchase decision. Simply put, customers will judge your business by your website. Even if your competition has an inferior product/service, a superior website will sway customers in their direction. You don’t want to cut corners on web design. However, not just any type of website will actually generate sales leads. It would be so easy if all you needed was a business card or brochure-type website to remain competitive in today’s market.

Social Marketing
Social media marketing is necessary for two reasons. For one, the public expects it of you. They use social media as a reference to validate your business. Second, it allows you to connect and foster relationships with customers and prospects. An important factor to consider is where your audience hangs out online? Know where they are so you can be there too. But remember, with so many social media networks nowadays only pick the key platforms for your business; master them, and grow from there.

Images from: sprout social

Images from: sprout social

A company blog is a simple and cost-efficient way for clients to get to know you as well as a great marketing tool to drive traffic to your website. The most important part of a company blog is balancing quality and frequency. For example, it doesn’t matter if you have a new post everyday if the substance of the article is of little interest to your audience. However, on that same note it’s very important to keep a regular schedule to strengthen your SEO and in order to be indexed higher on the Search Engine Results Page (SERP).

Email Marketing
The death of email marketing has been greatly exaggerated. Year after year, email continues to be one of the top performers in online marketing. Armed with the right strategy, the right list of prospects, and the right message delivered directly to their inbox—your customer list will grow. And email marketing can be one of the least costly methodologies available to you.

Referral Marketing
Referral marketing programs are specifically designed to gain new clients at almost no cost. Plus, word of mouth is one of the most successful and effective forms of marketing – 92% of consumers say they trust referrals from peers.

While your main goal is to obtain new customers remember to keep your current clients in mind. Simply asking them to refer a friend won’t motivate them to do so, which is why there must be an incentive. When coming up with an incentive think of what would make sense for your brand, and what would benefit your client the most. For example, Dropbox gives customers extra storage space for free if they refer a friend. This benefits the user and costs the company nearly nothing – it’s a win-win.

There are numerous ways to host a contest or giveaway to promote your brand, but one very rewarding route is a content contest. This is simply a contest where customers/followers submit content (e.g. photos, reviews, etc.) in order to be entered to win a prize. This method is 3-fold:

1) your clients feel engaged and a part of your company;
2) constantly creating your own content is time consuming/expensive
3) entrants will share the content on their personal feeds thus widening the scope of your business.

However, before you decide to host any type of contest be sure to review the local contest laws as well as any guidelines on specific social channels you may use.

Guerilla Marketing
Guerilla marketing is a low-cost, highly creative strategy to reach maximum exposure. Here are some examples of guerilla marketing:

Network, Network, Network
Statistics have proven time and time again that networking is integral to marketing your brand. According to Hubspot:

  • 90% of people say small meetings are their favourite communication method
  • Nearly 100% of peoplesay face-to-face meetings are essential for long-term business relationships
  • 72% of people say their impressions are impacted by how someone appears and their handshake

So, why is networking so important? It gives you the opportunity to receive good advice, can boost your brand and profile, as well as increases the integrity of your company.

The simplest way of networking is handing out business cards. However, don’t hand your card to just anyone and everybody – give them out selectively after you’ve made a sincere connection. Most importantly, get out to as many events as possible and talk with real people and share real experiences.

Marketing doesn’t have to break the bank to be effective. By being smart, efficient, and knowledgeable about your audience and personal limits you can be successful. If you encounter a roadblock, or feel overwhelmed simply contact a professional to help when needed.

At Strategis our goal is to connect our clients with success. Contact us for a free consultation to see how we can help you market your business on a budget.

After earning her degree at Simon Fraser University for New Media Journalism and Editing, Allemande has become an accomplished writer and editor. She is also certified in strategic social media marketing. Allemande fluently identifies the channel and content mix that is precisely right for your business and audience, conducts in-depth analytics for continuous improvement in your audience engagement and generation of sales leads, establishes KPIs and related metrics, and prepares meaningful reports that you can quickly action. Connect with Allemande.