Good news for small businesses, content marketing is possible even without spending a ton of money. You can actually have better content than large competitors who have large budgets.
“With the costs of maintenance, subscriptions and other basic expenses, is it even possible to bootstrap a startup to millions of users? Absolutely. There’s a method to working strategically with what you have, and it requires patience, resourcefulness and accountability,” Yoav Vilner of Entrepreneur explained.
The following marketing tips on a small budget outline an easy to implement content marketing strategies that are both economical and effective.
1. Leverage Old Data Online
You might not be able to afford content writers to customize something for your blog if your marketing budget is tight. Instead of coming up with something new, why not put a little spin on something that already exists onilne or even in print. Plenty of data studies are available online, and easy to use with a bit of craftiness.
These studies could get initial traction, but most are usually unnoticed. Find studies that connect with your industry and improve them. Focus on the most vital or interesting parts and maybe even add something trending.
Add images, charts, and produce some personal thoughts and predictions based on what data you have.
2. Utilize LinkedIn
LinkedIn is an important social media site that is usually under utilized. Don’t just make additions of network connections and then sign out. It’s best to join groups, have dialogues with connections, and even share some of your blog posts. Plenty of things happen on LinkedIn and it’s a good place to share your ideas, promote your content, and even build your brand.
3. Hold an Online Contest
Holding a contest online is a great way to generate buzz, that is if you have enough budget for a prize. Remember that the number of participants and additional potential leads would be worth the price. If you really don’t have the budget, remind yourself that the prize doesn’t have to be expensive. High-end water bottles, fancy backpacks, and even gift cards are enough to draw users in.
4. Make Creative Infographics
Infographics are actually very impactful marketing tools. They are visually stimulating, easy to understand, and people love sharing them. In fact, it’s actually an excellent way of getting more referral traffic and links.
“Studies show that 90 percent of the information that we remember is based on visual impact,” Albert Costill of Search Engine Journal said. “Include that tidbit with the fact that we live in an age where literally billions of pieces of content are created every minute, and you can easily understand why a simple visual aid can make your brand stand out.”
A professional designer could be expensive but you can make your own on the using online creative platforms like Canva.
5. Get Social
Getting more social is a solid strategy for increasing brand awareness, extending online reach, and improving trust and confidence to buy among your target audience. Make business accounts and be sure to participate in big social media sites such as Facebook, Pinterest, Twitter, LinkedIn, Google Plus and Instagram for engagement.
6. Email Marketing
Email marketing is an excellent way to get new visitors involved with your business and maintain relationships with existing clients. Acquire new website visitors who are willing to sign up for your newsletter by offering content that serves like a gift, such as a free ebook or detailed white paper.
Take care of your subscribers through email until they become ready to be paying customers. Your email marketing campaigns should start with a free email marketing service, like MailChimp.
7. Traditional Mail
Did you know that 42 percent of traditional mail recipients read or scan direct mails. That means that almost half of your target audience stops for a few seconds to read your message.
So if you have designed it appropriately, and included relevant offers, you can net a one to four percent response rate. Digital ads don’t even compare with a less than one percent CTR. You can also improve open rates via direct mail by using personalized envelopes to attract more attention.
8. Go Guerilla
This kind of marketing highlights unique style and is great for keeping a tight budget in check. Strategies are usually cheap and easy to implement, much more so when it’s localized. You could broadcast your Twitter channel using sidewalk art or even put stickers literally all over your city, within legal limits of course. There’s plenty of room to be highly inventive and successful without a massive marketing budget.
Is Your Small Business On a Budget?
Take your small business to the next level without breaking the bank. It’s easy to do if you have a few easy to implement strategies, like guerilla marketing or networking on LinkedIn. Is your small business on a budget? What marketing tactic is the most effective for you?
This is a guest contribution by Charles Dearing.