9 Low-Budget Business Marketing Strategies Every Startup Can Afford
The startups face many challenges and the financial constraint happens to be the most precarious ones among them.
Marketing is one of the most crucial aspects for any business and for the start-ups it is said to be the game changer. Until and unless people are aware of your start-up and what it offers, nobody is going to purchase your product or hire your service.
Growth is essential for every business, but none is as hungry for it as the start-up. They say that you have to spend the bucks to make money. Though this is absolutely true for marketing but there are also ways of achieving the best marketing bang in a restricted budget.
Here are some ways that will help you to go about it. Just take a look.
- Try Affiliate Marketing – One of the best ways in which you can avoid marketing is by going for referrals or by letting your customers advertise for you. This is also known as affiliate marketing. For this, you have to encourage people to recommend your products to others and you pay a commission when others purchase the referrals. You can also promote affiliate programming by featuring it on the website and inviting the customers for joining the program. Apart from that, you can also devise a compelling reward program that will help the network’s members to engage. You can also create a list of experts and influencers from your industry and send an outreach email requesting them to try the program for free and also explain the rewards that they can gain once they start to refer your products or services.
- Include Content Marketing – The content marketing can take many forms. But the best part is that none of them calls for a great investment. Apart from the above, you can also manage an on-site blog that gets updated with new blogs a few times every week. The videos, infographics and podcasts all are part of the category of content marketing. The content mediums can enhance your brand reputation and lead to more conversions.
- Cross-Promote to Make it Big – For this you have to target people in a variety of capacities. Think about how you can bring together the different areas of your client base both offline and online. As a start-up, you can tie up with the local businesses and use their existing customer base to sell your products. For examples., Google Android and Nestle Kitkat actually opted for such an endeavour for promoting the Android OS among the youngsters. About 50 million Kitkat bars were produced by Nestle with the branding element of Android for that.
- Share Your Expertise– Let everyone know that you are an expert and put your expertise to use for boosting the value and credibility of your business. You can do that by public speaking, publishing tips and even by pitching in the media. You should make it easier for people to associate your business with excellence in your industry. You can also purchase a membership from any of the communities that have online bulletin boards or forums. These allow you to advertise your business and this way you gain great exposure. But be careful to avoid community drama as it is your business that is represented through every post that you make. You can also volunteer to teach and participate in seminars through the local Chamber of Commerce. This will also boost your marketing efforts for your business.
- Post on Social Media – Research reveals that more than 2.4 billion people use the social media these days. Therefore, you must incorporate social media in your marketing strategy. With the growth of your business on social media, more people will see and recognize it. Most social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest allow business owners to pay for exposure and traffic. So post engaging and interesting posts that enable users to follow your account and encourage your followers by responding to their questions and comments.
- Go for SEO – If you are into content marketing then you can also opt for search engine optimisation. It can be a bit technically complex if you are new to SEO. But with a bit of dedication and reading you can always understand the basics. You need to write consistently high-quality articles and attract backlinks to your domain. If it gets a bit overwhelming, you can also appoint SEO professionals who can help your business website achieve better ranking on the search engines and thus gain more visibility.
- Attend Trade Shows – If you are thinking offline, then you can create a huge following by connecting with the influencers at trade shows and conferences. By leveraging the relationships, you not only promote your business but also any new launches in your business. This is quite an inexpensive way of marketing your start-up.
- Give Away Stickers – Though this may sound simple, but you can augment your user base in a great way by distributing free stickers and placing them in areas where they are easily visible. At the time of Reddit’s launch, just $500 was spent by Alexis Ohanian on stickers and that is the only investment done for marketing of that company. He traveled across the country displaying the stickers in visible places and offering them to random people. This helped Reddit to be what it is today.
- Sponsor an Event – Finally, when you sponsor events organised by professional event marketing companies, it can assist your startup to enhance its brand visibility. You just have to pay a small fee to be a sponsor and promote your business with stationaries, signs, booths and banners and other marketing materials at the event. When done correctly, this one turns out to be a mutually beneficial arrangement that drives great amount of sales. So as entrepreneurs, you should sponsor events that are relevant to your business. For example, if your business is IT related you can sponsor cyber security events.
The above are some of the some of the marketing strategies that are devised on shoe-string budget that any startup can afford.