Small businesses are regularly faced with a problem. They’ve got to figure out successful marketing on a budget, and often a tight one.
It’s a bit of a catch 22.
If you don’t manage to pull off a great marketing strategy, you’ll never have the revenue to grow. However, you may not have the cash reserves to run a pay-per-click ad or put together traditional marketing materials.
Marketing Isn’t Optional
Here’s the reality; whether you’re a brand-new business with little cash left to get you off the ground, or a more seasoned company that runs on a very tight budget to get to the next level, you must do something to make sales. Nothing stays static in business, so you’re either growing or dying. Without sales, you’re not growing, and without marketing, you’re not making sales.
You see where I’m going with this.
Nothing stays static in business, so you’re either growing or dying.
Marketing on a budget can be tough, especially if you don’t know what you’re doing. Every standard metric is that much more critical, and if you get things wrong, it could put you out of business. Every dollar counts.
Have Your Ducks In A Row
Look, in writing this article, I’m going to assume you have all the necessities in place. Your business must have the following in place before you attempt any marketing strategy. Make sure you:
- Know your numbers (follow these steps if you don’t)
- Set your goals (it’s best to use the SMARTER system)
- Developed your brand (hint: it’s more than your logo)
- Successfully launched your website
If you haven’t done these yet, there’s no need to read on. You’re not ready to start marketing until you’ve got those handled.
The Answers To Marketing On A Budget
The truth is, with a little patience to learn something new, the best channels for marketing on a budget are readily available, under your control, and (best of all) free.
That’s right. Free.
By now, you’ve probably figured out that social media is on my list of answers. You’re correct. It’s one of the two ways to market your company without spending a fortune.
The other is email marketing, and combined, these two create a powerhouse strategy that will offer you exposure, brand loyalty, and higher revenue per customer. Did I mention they’ll cost you zero dollars?
Let’s dig in to them a bit, shall we?
Social Media Marketing
One of the most prominent methods of marketing on a budget is social media. From Facebook to Snapchat, every brand has a social media presence at some level. Without one, you’re losing out on the chance to develop solid client relationships.
Every platform has a different audience and a different communication style. Figure out which ones make sense to you, then start making content for them. It’s best to have a good mix of content messages. And, whatever you do, don’t push sales with every post. It’s huge that you spend more time telling a story than asking for a buy.
If you use it right, you can build that second marketing method.
When you’re marketing on a budget, you’ve got to get the most return from every customer. Email is proven effective in customer acquisition and sales, better than any form of online marketing. Plus, according to Custora, email creates a 12% increase in customer lifetime value.
That’s a hell of a lot of money.
A good email campaign can be run with very little expense. If you’re patient, it won’t cost you a thing, and can be done from your regular email inbox. However, you probably ought to streamline a bit.
Most online mailing services have a free option to help you leverage great email marketing software when you’re first building your list. By the time your email winds up costing you money, if you’re doing things right, your marketing budget should be larger.
Make sure you’re spending more time delivering value than you are asking for a sale. Just like social media, a bad email campaign will get ignored quickly. That won’t help at all.
Don’t Cost Yourself Sales
The point of marketing is to make sales, not lose them. If the process of marketing on a budget gets in the way of increasing your budget, you need to adjust.
Sometimes it’s a time issue. If that’s the case, maybe you need to consider hiring an agency to market for you. Despite your budgetary limits, it may be that you can’t afford not to.
If you decide to consider an agency, make sure they’re able to help you within your budget. Remember, without a great marketing strategy, you’ll never grow that revenue.