For obvious reasons, all new small businesses need to do what they can to market themselves. Not every owner can afford to utilize the best marketing and advertising tactics though. These services and strategies can cost quite a lot of money to employ in the long run. Too many businesses overstretch their budget trying to roll out a huge campaign and wind up suffering financially. With that in mind, there are various free methods that can be employed at any time.
1. Harnessing the Power of Social Media
Perhaps the best option is starting a few social media accounts on sites like Twitter and Facebook. Without a doubt, small businesses that are looking to connect with the community need to give this a shot. Tweeting weekly deals or taking customer feedback through wall posts can produce great results. More fans and followers can translate into more sales or support for the business. Of course, a business owner needs to ensure they know how to utilize social media the right way.
2. Using Company or Other Vehicles
The average small business employs at least one or two vehicles and possibly more. Advertisements can be affixed to these vehicles with ease and without breaking the bank. Obviously, some people are going to respond to catchy ads they see while driving. Plus, this advertising strategy can be employed on any vehicle whether it is affiliated with the company or not. More driving equals more exposure although a person should not change their driving habits because that does not guarantee more sales or clients.
3. Reviews Submitted Online by Customers
In this day and age, numerous consumer review sites are available across the Internet. A business should ask its happy customers to give the store positive reviews on these websites. Doing so can help drive more traffic as others become interested in what the business has to offer. However, a person needs to realize that negative reviews will come now and then. Undoubtedly, these reviews need to be taken as constructive criticism rather than malice. Such reviews are vital for small and large companies in many ways and do not cost a penny.
4. Creating a Free Website
Luckily, multiple free website creators are available online. A business owner that cannot afford to maintain a paid site can create a free one in minutes. It is still important to keep quality in mind and get all the major details onto each page. When done successfully, these sites can draw more customers to a business by making it more visible to the rest of the community. In most cases, the owner will eventually want to move to a paid and hosted site though.
5. Simple In-Store Advertisements
It does not cost a business owner any major money to post advertisements and marketing material within their own store. More often than not, this can be a great way to let customers know about upcoming sales and promotions. From there, the customers will want to pay close attention to the ads inside the business. Any passersby will see these materials and might be enticed to enter the store and make a purchase too. For obvious reasons, no store owner is going to complain about that.
6. Attempting a Small Grassroots Campaign
This tactic is usually seen in politics, but it can work for businesses too. Basically, those involved with the small business can post fliers around town to advertise the store. Also, small pins or other items can be handed out to raise awareness. Pulling off this feat successfully by bringing in more customers is not always easy, but those that succeed will see the benefits and results right away.
7. Offering Great Customer Service From Day One
Customers love one thing above all else in most situations: great service. A small business that treats everyone with hospitality and care will see a loyal base develop right away. Of course, breeding such a great environment will draw in repeat customers and positive word-of-mouth will draw in new ones. Any store that lacks strong customer service will wind up crashing fairly quickly. Keeping this in mind is vital for success.
In any case, plenty of other free small business marketing methods exist. Any owner should try out a few of these tactics and see how things turn out.
Guest Author – Matt Becker is a freelance writer for SBA.com, an independently owned and operated website with no government affiliation.