How to Market Your Business with Zero Budget

How to Market Your Business With Zero BudgetLet’s talk about how to market your business on little or no budget. One truth I have found in marketing is that when you spend less money you must spend more time, it’s a tradeoff. It is truly astonishing how many ways there are to market without spending money if you are willing to spend the time. When you feel you shouldn’t spend money on marketing your business ask yourself what your own time is worth. Depending on how valuable your time is it might be more expensive in the long run not to hire someone. Of course, you can learn to do it all yourself, just make sure that’s the best thing for your business.

So how do you market without a budget? The answer is by simply spending time on your marketing. The less money you spend on marketing the more time you will have to spend on getting your message out there. For example, Content Marketing is a great method for establishing your brand voice, gaining credibility and getting your message out to your target audience. Personally, networking has done the most for my business in terms of time spent to dollars earned. Each industry is different, but I am of the opinion you can’t go wrong with networking as you explore the methods that work best for you.

When some businesses say they want free marketing it means they want someone else to do it for free. They just need to remember that everyone’s time is valuable and in general, people do not like working for free. One method to reduce your marketing spending is to consider a trade, consider what you can do for them. If you find a way to compensate others even when you are cash-strapped, you will find people are more willing to help you. Doing it yourself is the intent of this article on marketing without a budget but if you can get help, go for it.

So, what methods do I recommend to market on zero budget?

Email Marketing

According to Imaginepub, email is the third most influential source of information for B2B audiences, behind only colleague recommendations and industry-specific thought leaders. No matter what business you are in you should always be building your email marketing list. You can have a sign-up list at the front counter or use gated content to build your list, but you should always be generating more names for your email campaigns. Email marketing has one of the Highest ROI and conversion rates, in fact for every $1 you spend on email marketing, you can expect an average return of $38.  Use a free email service to get you started and upgrade when the email list becomes profitable. To keep people subscribed make sure your email campaigns provide value. People leave lists that don’t provide them something they feel is valuable to them.

Blogging

Blogging is the cornerstone of Content Marketing. Research conducted by Demand Gen Report in 2016 found 47% of buyers viewed 3-5 pieces of content before engaging with a sales rep. HubSpot found that marketers that use blogs get 67% more leads than those that do not so the number tell us it is worth the investment in time if used right. There are many blogging sites you can use for free and others that have a reasonable fee structure. Make sure you take a look at the user agreements regarding monetizing your blog if that is a direction you eventually want to go. If you create your own unique content and publish it yourself, you won’t have to spend a dime unless you want a specific domain or program features for your blog. Couple that with a program to create your own graphics and it makes it easier to brand your business online in a uniform way.

Social Media

Using social media platforms to reach your potential audience can be cost-effective and powerful. Sprout Social found that 80% of social marketers said that their key strategy is to increase engagement across social channels. You don’t have to buy paid ads to talk directly to your audience you just need to speak about things they want to hear. The same company found that 73% of consumers want to see posts about discounts and sales, 60% want to see posts that showcase new products and services and 59% want to see posts that teach something. Between preexisting groups and growing your own following, there are many channels to get the word out about your business. Use only the Social Media channels that make sense for your business and the ones your target audience uses. Don’t waste time on Social Media Channels that don’t make sense. Using a graphics program will also help gain more exposure as visual content does well on all social media platforms.

Networking

The number one way to get the word out about your business is Networking. Forbes conducted a survey and found around 9 in 10 people claiming that small meetings are their favorite communication method. Networking reaches fewer people but has the potential to create a richer client list and more impact than any other method. The biggest impact is that the close rate for in-person meetings is 40%. No social network or online ad has a close rate anywhere near that high. Also, if you network properly you aren’t just finding new clients by yourself, but you are creating an army of advocates who will feed you warm leads and more business. The most powerful part of networking as a marketing tool is that people buy from people they trust and networking builds trust.

 

Conclusion

You may want to spend zero dollars and do all the marketing yourself, but it could be worth bringing in outside help. Regardless of which direction, or combination of directions, you go you now have more of an idea of what is possible with a little time and determination. Stuart labs found that 90% of searchers haven’t made their mind up about a brand before starting their search so marketing is more important than ever in the modern world. Make sure you have a plan and know which parts you are willing to do yourself.

Small Business Marketing With No Budget

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What Can a Business Coach do for You?

I hope you all have been enjoying the posts, infographics, and knowledge I have been passing on to you good folks. Today I’d like to talk about what a business coach can do for you. Small business owners wear many hats and are expected to know every aspect of business. Of course, it isn’t realistic and that’s where I come in. I help fill in the gaps so all those important things don’t fall through the cracks. Social media, marketing, sales processes, customer support, business plans, content management can all have an impact on a business’s success but is a ton for a small group or individual to manage. Some clients need advice, some need training, some just need me to get the job done for them. I am a force multiplier for small businesses helping them get more done than they could do by themselves. Of course my first consult is free (otherwise how do we know if I can help) and it isn’t meaningless fluff, you will walk away with usable information even if we aren’t a fit. Give me a call and get your business the help it deserves. (435) 554-8209 https://www.facebook.com/mybusinessadviser/

Coach Should You Have A Business Coach-

Using the New Facebook: Part 5

Facebook Post Idea #5

You spent money and time to create new content but what good does it do you if no one sees it? Your social media is a great way to make sure customers see your hard work. You can also use a longer blog post or whitepaper multiple times by repurposing the content. A video, several quote blocks, an infographic, and a summary post is how one blog post becomes 5 different social media posts.  Make sure your hard work is seen by your customers with links to the content.

Increasing Page Interaction

Getting shares and likes can help boost your page and get you an even wider audience. One technique that works well is to post quotes or humor on your page. Make sure it is relevant to the page topic or it can be counterproductive. Injecting a little humor never hurts but unless you page is all about comedy make sure you don’t overdo it. Posting quotes from famous people that are relevant to your page can also help but shouldn’t be the only thing you post. Keeping a good mix of content is the key to boosting yout engagement.

 

Use quotes or humor to boost your page interaction

Use Trending Topics

With the new algorithms on Facebook, you need to curate your content even more carefully. One way to increase the reach of your posts is to talk about trending topics. Look on Facebooks news feed to see what topics are trending. Don’t force it but if you see a topic that is relevant to your business or you can make a connection to, use it. Once in a while you can go off topic about a trending article but I don’t recommend it. Make it a habit of studying the trending topics and grabbing the ones that make a connection.

Use Trending Topics to increase your reach on Facebook (2).png

Facebook Changes Algorithm…..Again!

It’s that time again to watch everyone panic as Facebook changes their algorithm again. Should you be worried? Not if you have been following me and putting the practices I teach into place. Good solid content marketing is going to benefit from these changes and shouldn’t see much if any drop in engagement. If you have been practicing spam tactics and click bait you are going to see the floor fall out from under you, but not all is lost. It is never too late to practice good marketing. Here is the lowdown on the new Facebook changes.

The new algorithm is based on the new set of Facebook Values. If your content matches those values it will be seen more. If it does not you will be hidden from most peoples view. Here are the values they are promoting

  • Family and Friends come first: The main objective of the News Feed is to connect people with their friends and family. So posts from friends and family are prioritized. After those posts, Facebook found that people want their feed to inform and entertain them.
  • A platform for all ideas: Facebook welcomes all ideas while making sure that everyone feels and is safe. They aim to deliver stories that each individual wants to see the most, based on their actions and feedback.
  • Authentic communications: Facebook prioritizes genuine stories over misleading, sensational, and spammy ones.
  • You control your experience: Individuals know themselves best. So Facebook creates features (such as unfollow and see first) to let people customize their Facebook experience.

Here is a handy guide to get you through the strangeness of the new feed. Feel free to share it and keep it close as you plan out your Facebook strategy.

Quick Guide to Facebook Algorithm

Easy Ways to Conduct Market Research

Market research is vital to the survival of a business. Fortunately, it doesn’t have to break the bank and likely you are already conducting it without knowing you are. Here are some easy market research methods that won’t break the bank though for many of them I do recommend bringing in a marketer or coach to run them for you. If you do it yourself beware of Confirmation Bias (you really need to look this up) as it can be very costly and make your hard work useless or even damaging to your business. Here are 6 ways to conduct some easy market research.

ONLINE REVIEWS
See what your customers are already saying. This is an easy way to see what is being said in the open market about your product or service. Use reputable sites to get a feel for the mood around your brand but go with an open mind, reviews can be harsh.

ASK CUSTOMERS FOR FEEDBACK
Just ask. Find some loyal customers and some new customers and ask them directly what you are doing well and what you can work on. Use that feedback to ask better questions next time as well.

FORM YOUR OWN FOCUS GROUP
Focus groups can give you great insight especially into new possible product launches or new services you want to offer. Be careful they don’t turn into echo chambers as that can be costly and of no use to you.

SURVEY YOUR CONTACTS
Talk to people you know but not necessarily do business with. They can be a great outside eye for your business. Networking groups and alumni groups are perfect for getting a second opinion.

SURVEY OTHERS
There are sites where you can get random strangers to weigh in on your product or service. If you don’t want to spend the money on guaranteed responses you can always go it alone using social media or just stand on a busy corner working the crowd with surveys.

SOCIAL MEDIA
Many platforms allow polls and you can boost many posts to reach outside your typical audience. You can also just do keyword searches to see what people are complaining about related to the industry you work in. It’s a treasure trove of data to be found.

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