Advertising is such a critical part of running a business as it is the only way to gain exposure. You need to get the word out there and draw in as many people as possible. Big companies have no issue with this, investing thousands in massive marketing budgets to promote themselves across every channel imaginable. It’s unlikely that your small business has the budget to compete with the big guns, but you can still advertise your company without spending a fortune.
Let’s look at some of the most effective advertising methods for small businesses with low budgets:
Use social media
A lot of larger companies will invest heavily in social media marketing, usually paying for ads all the time. However, small businesses can advertise on social platforms without spending a penny. Simply create accounts on the most relevant social networks, and post away. Create content for social media, use the right hashtags, and you will gradually increase your reach. Hashtags are definitely key as they help you tap into the right audience and get your account/posts seen by more people.
It’s the oldest of old-school methods, but word-of-mouth marketing still works. Especially if you have a local business that depends on local customers! Talk to friends and family, get them to spread the word about your business, speak to their friends, and get them to continue spreading. Again, social media is useful here as people can share posts or pages, broadening your reach. The more people you have shouting about your business, the more interest it will generate.
Create a Google My Business account
Have you ever searched for a company online and been presented with results on a map? You click on the results and get lots of information about each company, displaying things like their opening times, website, where they’re located, photos, etc. This is called a Google My Business profile, and you need to create one for your company. It’s completely free, and it helps you gain more exposure when people are searching for local businesses. Now, you’ll be on the map, so anyone can see where you are and how to get there.
Signage is such a low-cost way of advertising your small business, regardless of where you’re based. You can get professional business signs for your front garden, which tells people about your business. If you work from home, this is an ideal spot for advertising. Even if you don’t, it still helps to spread the word.
Of course, you will need signs outside your business premises to draw the attention of consumers walking by. The whole concept of using signage is that you only have to pay for the sign, then you’re advertising your business for free after. People spot your logo, your sign stands out from all others, and it draws customers to your location.
Improve your SEO
You can advertise your business through search engines, and it doesn’t need to cost a penny. Technically, you’re not doing any advertising, but you are getting your company out there when people search for keywords and phrases. With SEO, you can improve your site to get it up into the upper search results for searches relating to your company. Whenever someone searches for something you sell, they’ll see your website as one of the early results. Improving your SEO can be challenging as it’s highly competitive, but it’s worth doing – particularly as it can be free, yet the rewards are very high.
Guerilla marketing is all about being creative and designing something that stands out from the crowd. You will create a spectacle that people see in public, and it draws people in. This could be a mural on a wall, a statue; anything you can think of. The benefit of this is that you don’t have to continuously pay to advertise your business – as you would with posters or billboards. Instead, the only costs are the ones used to create your piece of guerilla marketing.
Need some inspiration? Here are a few of the best examples of guerilla marketing we’ve seen in recent times:
In essence, guerilla marketing is largely about using the world around you and implementing it into your marketing material. There are so many things you can do, and it can be low-cost if you make it so.
As you can see, there are plenty of ideas to advertise your small business on a restricted budget. You don’t need to pump millions into a marketing campaign for it to be effective. Save money, but still enjoy the benefits of advertising your business.