The limited marketing budgets of small businesses can make it difficult to promote your company. If you’re looking for ways to market yourself to your customers without spending much money, there are a number of ways you can do so.
Due to the fact that most business owners don’t have the time to research and identify these free marketing ideas, we’ve done the research for you.
There are a lot of ways to promote your business for free and on a limited budget, grouped into three categories:
- Marketing ideas that are free and fast
- Ideas that take a little bit more work
- Marketing ideas that are quick and inexpensive
We’ve prepared some free strategies that don’t require a lot of time or resources (since we know that time is money).
So let’s get started with some marketing strategies you can utilize without breaking the bank.
1. Join Google My Business for free
The best free marketing strategy especially for local businesses has become setting up a Google Business Profile. Google Maps, Local search results, and branded search results that appear on the right-hand side of the Knowledge Panel are included in this listing.
To rank higher on Google Maps and local results, your Business Profile needs to be optimized. In order to optimize it, you need to verify that you own it – and this is achieved by logging into your Google My Business account.
2. Make social media posts (and interact with others)
Creating a community on social media is one of the best ways to grow your small business, express your brand’s personality, and build trust with your audience. Get involved with social media by setting up business accounts on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, and more. The easiest thing you can do when you have a few minutes free is to do this.
What you can do:
- Drive traffic to your website by promoting your blog posts.
- To engage followers more, engage in direct conversations with them.
- Ask for feedback and run polls.
- Create quick, accessible posts by extracting information from longer content. This will make your content more digestible.
You need to keep up with your social media accounts, no matter what motivates you. Be consistent, give back, be engaged.
3. Share social media posts with people (and brands)
It’s organic reach to new audiences, building your following, and possibly even increasing sales that can help you reach your loyal followers, brand evangelists, and even neighbouring businesses. As well as encouraging your followers to tag your social media handle, you should encourage them to tag your business location in their posts.
Similarly, you can tag happy customers in your own posts, thereby exposing your business to their networks (provided the customer has given you permission to do so).
4. Don’t forget to hashtag!
Including hashtags in your social media posts is another strategy you can use for free marketing that can broaden your reach – on Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok for sure, but also on Facebook and LinkedIn.
It is possible to reinforce your brand identity by using broad and trending hashtags, but you shouldn’t use them exclusively. When you are sharing resources or giving advice, you will want to add more specific hashtags (similar to long-tail keywords). A local business should use hashtags that reflect its location. Custom hashtags are also a viable option! Your posts should contain a range of hashtag formats so they can reach their intended audience.
5. Use LinkedIn to your advantage
It is one of the most used social media sites but is often underutilized. You should not simply add network connections and sign out. Rather, engage in conversations with those you meet, post your blog content and offers, join forums and offer your contributions, and share quality content from others.
Building your brand and earning trust and respect in your industry can be achieved by educating customers and enabling other professionals to grow. Don’t forget to share the platform with your staff as well!
6. Implement local SEO
All search queries are served content that is relevant, high-quality, and accurate according to the Google algorithm. The system does not reward the winners, so small businesses are on an equal footing with larger competitors.
Starting now and continuing to work on local SEO will yield huge rewards over time; it is free, but can take some time. Follow these local SEO tips:
- Make sure that your main website pages contain location-based keywords (such as “Portland bakery”).
- Verify that your information is identical across platforms when you submit your information to online directories.
- Provide information specific to the neighbourhoods you serve on your website.
7. Design and implement an email marketing strategy
Sending emails to your existing customers and to new visitors will help you engage them in your business. The top return on marketing investment is still achieved with email marketing, and though it’s not new, it’s still one of the most reliable ways to do so. Let’s look at how to make sure it happens:
- Write subject lines that are creative and thoughtful.
- Offer your readers an incentive in every email to take the next step.
- A/B tests can be used to determine what copy and offers resonate with your list. Track your performance and notice what copy and offers work.
8. Prepare infographics based on data
An infographic is one of the most powerful marketing tools you can use. In addition to being visually appealing, people also enjoy sharing them, so they’re effective for generating referral traffic and links.
A designer can charge a lot of money to design an infographic for you. However, you can create one yourself for free with programs like Canva and Adobe’s free vector kits. Visme, our favourite, provides all the elements you need to create a visually appealing and shareable infographic.
9. Redeem promo credits for free ads
Often, you can find Facebook or Google Ads discounts and coupons, even if massive advertising campaigns are out of your budget. A lot of hosting companies offer advertising discounts and coupons in their service packages. Look into this. Receiving the promo is simple, but if you want to get the most accurate results and insights, you’ll need to brush up on your PPC skills first.
10. Submit your business for an award
Businesses around the world offer business awards that can be won, which provide a badge you can use on your website. Credibility can be increased with these badges, and sales can increase as a result. Tips for marketing your award and maximizing its impact.
You should host your own awards ceremony if none are available for your industry. By participating in this award, you’ll garner more attention from other businesses in your industry, increasing your chances of building connections and collaborations in the future!