A new business doesn’t need a sizeable marketing budget to get off the ground and get itself noticed. In fact, marketing can be done very much on the cheap so long as you’re putting your money into the right places. Forget about above-the-line advertising campaigns; rather put your focus in some of the key strategies outlined below.
Blog with guest writers
Use a service like Upwork or Fiverr to find writers who can contribute articles to your blog. These writers should produce a steady stream of content to keep the blog looking respectable. You want a fresh piece of content going live Monday to Friday. The topics can be broad but focused around the industry you’re in. Then, reach out to people in your industry who have a social following and invite them to guest publish a piece. There might be payment required, but in return, have them share their write-up with their social media audience. The goal is to keep this up until such time as influencers are coming to you and offering their work for free. At this point, you can pare back your freelance rotation and rely more on unpaid work.
Quora is a free question-and-answer website where users pose questions to which the community can provide answers.
Good answers can net you thousands of views, and since your profile can be linked to your business’ website, it’s a free source of traffic, and a great way to get your name out there. You can also add links within the body of your answer too. Use this feature to promote your blog content, which is being created using the method outlined in point number one.
Comment on websites
Most websites use a plugin like Disqus to readers comment on what they’ve just watched or read. Create a professional-looking Disqus account and make yourself heard. Comment early and leave something insightful. A good rule of thumb is to dispense advice before you plug your business. You’ll get a respectable number of clicks on your profile provided you’re saying something of value, and so long as your website is listed in your profile.
Interview industry maestros
A bit like the blogging tactic, it’s a good idea to start your own podcast as a way of aligning yourself with influential members of the community. Podcasting is very cheap to set up – you just need a mic and software to record what you’re saying – and thanks to the beauty of the internet, there are endless numbers of people you can reach out to interview, many of whom will repost the podcast on their own channels.
Pay micro influencers on Instagram
Yes, ads have to be disclosed on Instagram, but that’s absolutely no reason not to search out influencers who have a committed social following and pay them a few hundred dollars (hundred, not thousand, mind) to flaunt your product. The key is to look for influencers who have between 5,000 and 10,000 followers, as this will keep the exercise affordable while still netting you a return on investment. If the Instagrammer in question has access to social analytics, even better.
Speak at an industry event
Finally, do your best to get on the public speaking circuit. While talking to a room of strangers isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, it’s an invaluable word-of-mouth marketing strategy and an excellent way of meeting key stakeholders at every level of business. Like anything, being able to command a room takes practice, but the more you get out of your comfort zone, the better you’ll become. And remember: everyone has unique experiences they can leverage to make the audience sit up and take notice.