25 Ways to Market Your Business on the Cheap
Do you feel like you’re not getting your name out there enough? Or you’re staring at your phone or your inbox waiting for those leads to pour in, but they just aren’t yet?
You don’t always have to spend the big bucks to reach a big audience.
Here’s our top 25 ways to market your business on the cheap!
01 – Use Instagram + Planoly: Planoly’s Forever Free Plan lets you plan out 30 days of Instagram posts so that your feed looks drop dead gorgeous and carefully crafted. Posting helpful content consistently and strategically is easy, can be free and gets your name in your audience’s feeds on the daily.
02 – Collaborate with another business: Have a friend or industry peer you can work with that is also serving your niche? Collaborate on a package offering so you’re reaching two audiences at the price of one (example: wedding photographer + wedding coordinator).
03 – Offer your products and services FREE to family and friends & post about it: This is a great way to build up your portfolio, PLUS people will see you are busy and experienced.
04 – Use Pinterest: Think of Pinterest as a big search engine like Google. When your audience searches your industry, YOU want to be at the top! Get your images on there!
05 – Start an email list: If you still have a small list – or no list at all – get on Mailchimp to get in your audience’s inbox each week for free. You can reach your following more regularly and make sure they know about your offerings in their email. PRO TIP: Have a helpful FREE download on your website in exchange for email addresses. You can set this up through Mailchimp.
06 – Value word of mouth: Word of mouth marketing exceeds traditional print 10 fold. Cultivate the good reviews and repost them.
07 – Host a giveaway: Give away your products and services on social media to get more attention whether that's giving away a free logo design or a free engagement session.
08 – Join a Facebook group: Get in a group that needs ya and start chatting yourself up. Respond to people's questions, comment if they are posting that they are in search of a product or service that you provide. You'd be surprised how many will respond just because they know there is a real human interacting with them in the group! PRO TIP: Be careful not to over promote yourself in there. Just be helpful to them and they will take notice.
09 – Try out Facebook advertising: You don’t have to spend a lot of $$ on Facebook ads for them to be successful. Try running one for just a couple of dollars and see how it does. You can also test different groups of people with Facebook ads to find a group of people who are interested in your products or services that you might not have thought of before.
10 – Start a blog with helpful content: The keyword here is helpful. Your audience might not care about what you did on a Saturday – unless you are a lifestyle blogger and that's what you do! If you're a photographer, get tips out to your brides, your new mamas, or whoever it is that you a photographing that they can ACTUALLY use.
11 – Be a guest blogger: Get access to someone else's audience all for the low price of a quality, helpful blog post. If you're dishing out helpful content, people are more likely to know, like and trust you.
12 – Create a listing on Craigslist: Okay, this sounds crazy, but people still search here! Especially if you're in a smaller town or serving a niche market, this could be a good spot for you!
13 – Give your products or services to influencers to talk about and blog about: Message them on Instagram, let them know you want to send them a little gift, get their address or email, and send them a little something! They might be willing to post about it or blog about your product and service.
14 – Add your biz to your personal social media profiles: Don’t treat your personal and business social media like church and state. Maybe one of your Facebook friends needs what you offer.
15– Put your business on your email signature: Serving up consistency across all of your communication is an easy way to rake in new customers or clients by building the "know, like and trust factor." People are more likely to purchase from you or book you if they can tell you are trustworthy from every piece of communication they see.
16 – Host a free class or webinar: People love free classes and educational content. New modern technology makes it so easy to broadcast a quick video of yourself or your computer screen to hundreds of people. Hand out your expertise so people know what you’re about and entice them to come back for more.
17 – Offer free consultations: One of the big things that may stop someone from paying is knowing how it will benefit them individually and specifically. By letting your potentially customers or clients reach out to you even in the form of a free 20-minute phone call can help seal the deal and move them from on-the-fence to loyal customer.
18 – Get local + give out your information: Is your niche local? Get out to farmer’s markets, fairs, parades or any other community event and network!
PRO TIP- Broaden your reach and create pop-ups at events not in your market if your trying to reach a larger audience.
19 – Create a referral program: It's already tough enough to bring in new clients. Let your existing clients do some of the heavy lifting. If you offer some sort of incentive for them to bring you more customers, you BOTH benefit from a thriving relationship.
20 – Join an Instagram challenge: Have you seen people participating in an Instagram challenge and all using the same hashtag? If so, be sure to join in on the next round. If you're looking to get more followers, this is a great way to interact with people on Instagram and get your profile seen! It breaks your normal hashtag routine and hacks into someone else's already-built audience of people who are also participating in and following the challenge.
21 – Change up your hashtags: If you aren’t using any, start now! This is how people find your profile when they’re looking for something on Instagram. Think about it as a search feature. You can find TONS of different hashtags for your niche so that people can easily find you if they are searching for your product or service on Instagram.
22 – Sponsor an event & get listed on their website: We're all about tapping into another company's audience if it's mutually beneficial! Sponsor an event and get some clicks by having your name on the list of supporters. (HINT: This only works REALLY well if your business name clearly communicates what you do. If it doesn't, it may be time to think about a rebrand.)
23 – Organize a local networking event for your target audience: This one seems like it might not be helpful to you because you won't be networking with your own peers. For example, if you are a wedding photographer, don't setup a meet-up of other wedding photographers. You want to get a bunch of brides together. WHY? They'll come looking for community. You'll get their contact information and get to interact with ACTUAL potential customers or clients. This benefits your target audience + you! What could be better?
24 – Utilize SEO: Spend time during an afternoon or over a weekend honing in on your keywords on your site. Maybe that means writing a couple of blog posts that highlight your keywords, or that means using the built-in SEO tools on your website builder tool. Do some research on how you can do this for your site, and then start plugging away! There's a lot of great resources and tutorials out there.
25 – Have a professional and credible website: People want to hire professionals who look like a boss online. They know, like and trust you because your site shows off how credible and experienced you are.