So you have built a website, and made a start on the obligatory Facebook page. But now what?
Let’s face it – the majority of small businesses don’t have much of a marketing budget. However, for the technically savvy, building a business online and doing it on a shoestring budget isn’t just some fairytale fantasy, it’s a proven reality and actually achievable.
While online marketing might seem incredibly daunting to start with – a complex skill set of technical knowledge, digital know how and artistic and creative elements spread across a wide array of platforms – every business owner also knows just how important it is to market their business online to gain visibility and reach their target audience.
With the ready and easy availability of so many digital channels and ways to reach your target market, there are a number of different skills and platforms you can utilise, without having to pay an agency tens of thousands of pounds.
Here are some of the easiest and most cost effective ways you can start promoting your business online:
While building a blog is something that takes years to develop to get a really good audience, it also offers one of the best and most cost-effective means for reaching large array of people. It does require passion, persistence, along with a firm understanding of the subject matter and the ability to connect with your audience.
To become an effective blogger, you need to deliver a huge amount of value and get across key information in your industry or niche in order to succeed in the long term. As long as your audience is engaged and finds real value in the information you share, it will slowly but surely build up over time.
A blog also gives you great content to then share on other platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and ezines.
Everywhere you turn there is video content, articles about video content, and even videos about video content; it is becoming unavoidable, and is certainly the go to marketing tactic for 2017.
Nearly every social platform is currently generating billions of video views per day; even Snapchat has broken the 10 billion daily view milestone.
Videos help increase your chances of generating income from your audience, as you can make the content engaging, educational and entertaining — the marketing trifecta.
You can make the most of this by creating video content about your products and using live streaming services like Facebook Live to connect with your audience and explain exactly how your product will help them reach their goals and make life simpler.
Email marketing has become a vital tool for small businesses that want to send regular marketing messages. The attractions are obvious – it’s fast and cheap. But that’s not all – email marketing offers great opportunities to target messages to the right people at the right time and bring in serious business.
Response rates for bulk emails are much higher than for direct mailings and results can be measured and used to make subsequent email marketing more tightly focused.
You can check out my top tips for running a successful email campaign here.
Create valuable content
Not only do potential customers love great content, but so does Google. There are many ways to share information – blogging, creating videos, hosting podcasts, designing infographics or submitting articles to online authority sites. Not only do you gain authority as an expert, but you also get free traffic. You can also offer to be a guest blogger for another complementary website or be interviewed on a podcast.
You also don’t always have to produce the content yourself. You can hire freelance writers, graphic designers and guest speakers. If you run out of ideas, you can repurpose old content and give it a new spin.
Co – marketing promotions
Co-marketing is when two companies work together on a promotion for a co-branded offer. This can be especially beneficial if you haven’t got much of a marketing budget; by joining forces with another company and making the most of their reach, co-marketing campaigns deliver more leads and awareness.
One of the easiest ways to offer your audience a valuable co-marketing promotion, is to find a partner who has a similar target audience, a good reputation and an established online following.
Promoting your content on social media is a great way to drive awareness for your campaign and attract visitors to your website or social media pages. For added value, don’t forget to tag the company you are partnering with.
By choosing your priorities carefully and putting a marketing plan into place, you can put some serious online marketing horsepower behind your business without breaking the bank.