Let’s face it, a business without customers or clients is not going to be profitable. Despite this, many business owners say that they are too busy to market their products. While marketing is sometimes best left in the hands of professionals, this can be difficult if you are on a shoestring budget. With this in mind, here are five ways you can market your brand online without spending a fortune.
Get on Social Media
Once used for cultivating friendships, today social media has also become a valuable marketing tool. And the great news is that you can promote your business on platforms such as Facebook, Instagram or Twitter for nothing, or close to nothing. Social media is packed with billions of potential consumers around the world. So how do you turn them into customers? First of all, create a business profile for the various social media sites and start interacting with users by posting valuable information or responding to questions on various forums. Platforms such as Facebook also offer paid marketing options (these are usually quite affordable), so make sure that you set a little time aside to learn how you can increase the visibility of your business by utilizing their services.
Start a Blog
While this is more of a long-term strategy, as building a blog audience can take time, blogging is one of the most cost-effective ways of reaching a large number of people. It is also a great way of getting people to talk about your brand. Once your blog really takes off, you can start thinking about building a sales funnel to streamline your marketing efforts. Blogging does take effort, so if you are not prepared to put in the hard yards this may not be the best strategy for you. In addition, in order to post content that is valuable to your clients, you need to have an outstanding understanding of your subject matter and be able to convey the information in an engaging matter. It is also important that you keep your blog updated, as a dormant blog is unlikely to attract a wide audience. Alternatively, you can increase your exposure by contributing guest posts to popular industry sites.
Create Video Tutorials
If you are an expert in an area others are keen to learn about then use this to your advantage. Built a compelling video tutorial about a subject matter you are an expert in and post it on sites such as YouTube and Flickr. Once you set yourself up as an authority in your field, potential customers are more likely to come to you for paid services. Video tutorials on a certain subject matter are also likely to attract the right demographic, or individuals interested in paying for your products and services. In addition, videos are highly shareable, so don’t be surprised if your creation ends up being reposted on platforms such as Facebook. On the flip side, video files are often large and can take space on your computer. Depending on the complexity of your business promotion, using an HDD, or a hard disk drive, is a great way of ensuring that you have enough storage space on your computer to save all your advertising material.
Give Stuff Away
People love gifts, and your potential customers are no exception. Running competitions on social media is a great way of spreading the word about your brand and generating new followers. It is also a brilliant way of thanking your existing customers for their loyalty. Alternatively, you can also offer discounts on your products and services. If you are in the information business, such as selling e-books and courses, why not offer your first chapter or lesson for free to give your customers a taste of your product.
Locate the Appropriate Online Channels
While social media platforms are a great tool for promoting your brand, there are also other online sites where you can talk about your products and services. To establish expertise in your field, join forums that focus on your industry and respond to user questions with helpful advice. Q&A websites such as Quora are a great place to start. Simply search for questions in your area of expertise and make sure that you answer them to the best of your abilities. Meaningful advice is sure to capture the attention of people who are already interested in your niche. Alternatively, sign up with HARO (Help A Reporter Out) and get free publicity by responding to media queries (you never know, you might just be lucky enough to get a mention in a reputable outlet such as Forbes or Huffington Post). Another way to promote your business for free is by emailing a testimonial about a business or influencer in your field of expertise, as these – and your link – may just end up on their website.