Let's face it: running a business requires lots of time - and lots of resources.
When you're responsible for anything ranging from packing up orders and sometimes even holding the books, it's only natural that promoting your business may be put in the backburner.
However, there's nothing more important than spreading the word about what makes your business special, and, of course, getting some quality leads in the process, too!
Regardless of how little time you may have, we're confident that our list of ways you can promote your business will help you come up with a solid marketing blueprint that will allow you to increase your reach - and your bottom line - with ease.
Free online ways to promote & grow your business
1. Tap into the power of social media
Make sure to set up business pages on all popular social media platforms. It not only makes it easy for people to find you, but it also gives you the opportunity to build a loyal online community that identifies with your brand, too!
2. Get your own website
A functional website is an invaluable informational tool for your current and future clients. Whether you use a website builder platform, or have someone custom create it for you, make sure that it is fully responsive, meaning that it's user-friendly across PC, laptop and mobile devices, so that your customers can access it with ease, anytime, anywhere!
3. Cover your website's SEO basics
SEO, aka Search Engine Optimization, is crucial for having your website appear at a favorable position in search engine results. Instead of spending a lot of money by outsourcing SEO, you can opt to download one of the many available website SEO plugins that will walk you through the optimization process, step-by-step.
4. Start a blog
This is a two-for-one package. Adding a blog section to your website will help keep your customers engaged with your business, while it will also provide an invaluable SEO boost, seeing as a maintaining an active blog is a surefire way to improve your website's visibility on search engines.
5. Build an email list
Email marketing is one of the most powerful means of promoting your business. By sending out news and updates on product additions and events, as well as creating exclusive, email-subcriber only offers, you secure a spot in your customers' mailboxes, and put your brand in front of their eyes, every time they check their inbox.
6. Get listed on on business directories (Google Business, Yelp, etc.)
Google has a dedicated free service called Google Business, which is essentially a comprehensive small business directory. Setting up your Google Business account will get your business listed on Google search and Google maps; allow your customers to find directions on how to reach you; and give you free advertising and an added SEO boost through search engine visibility.
There are countless of other sites you can also use to create a simple business profile so people know where to find you.
Besides Google, use similar sites like Yelp, Yahoo, and Bing.
It is important to be visible online, so do a little research first to see if your business name, address, or phone number come up on any sites.
Be sure to update your profile regularly.
7. Cross-check your Name, Address and Phone Number across the web
Name, Address and Phone Number, also reffered to as "NAP" by SEO specialists, is among the most crucial factors for getting your business found on the web. Make sure all three details are listed correctly on your website, social media and business listings to avoid customer confusion and maintain your SEO rankings!
8. Join online communities and Facebook groups relevant to your field
This strategy will help you foster bonds with potential customers that have a direct interest in your goods or services. You will quickly get to know and chat with people on a first-name basis, which, in turn, will make them want to get through your door, meet you in person and buy what you have to offer!
The sky is the limit with this one.. You can join hundreds of community forums as well as social media groups. You'll be surprised at the amount of communities that exist out there just waiting for you to partake in them!
TIP: Do simple keyword research on Facebook to find groups that match your personal interests.
9. Comment on blogs and social media accounts in your niche
Keep up with other businesses and engage with their owners, as well as their client base, by commenting on their blogs and social media posts. You will not only achieve in becoming a known figure among their online communities, but also in forming lasting rapports with both customers and owners, which can turn into valuable connections, as well as sources of revenue.
10. Write guest posts on other blogs
A guest post will establish your authority in your field, get you right in front of your target market, and offer valuable backlinks to your website which will enhance your SEO efforts.
Reach out to both printed and online publications & blogs to ask if they are willing to receive an article submission. Once you have the green light, submit an article that reflects your particular knowledge in your field. Make sure you are offering value. You may catch the attention of a new customer.
11. Ask for reviews
Most business owners are stuck when it comes to this, but they - and you! - shouldn't.
Reaching out to your loyal customers and encouraging them to say what they think about your business online will not only make them feel appreciated, but it will also help get you some quality feedback that will attract new customers, too.
12. Respond to all reviews - yes, even the negative ones!
Join the conversation and reply to every comment and review left for your business. It's very important to thank those that take the time to say good things about your products or services, but it's even more crucial to respond to those that have less than flattering things to say. This shows that you are being proactive; acknowledge customers' opinions, and that you strive for their satisfaction.
13. Start a podcast
Start your own podcast, and share your knowledge with others. There are plenty of tools available to help guide you in creating a successful podcast. Listen to other podcasts to determine your goals and style. Podcasts allow you to become an authority in your field, attract new leads, and get exposure for your product or service.
14. Be a guest on someone else’s podcast
Reach out to a podcast creator to collaborate and offer value to their followers. Share what makes you unique or offer something special to listeners. It’s a great opportunity to establish long-term relationships with others in your industry.
15. Host a webinar
Another way to solidify your reputation as an expert is to host weekly or monthly webinars. Share tips, insights and personal anecdotes that your audience can relate to, and use this opportunity to plug your services to turn your viewers into paying customers.
16. Send out a weekly newsletters
After compiling an email list, brainstorm ideas about things to include in a weekly newsletter.
It doesn't have to be anything too salesy - in fact, adopting a personal approach will make you look real and authentic, while it also gives you the opportunity to slip in your offers in the newsletter graphics or text, without coming off as forceful or pushy.
Pro tip: Add a call to action in your emails to promote your new product or service or include a special offer or coupon just for your newsletter followers.
17. Run an online giveaway
Attract new customers and fire up your existing ones by giving out one of your products or services through one of your social media profiles. To join your contest, ask participants to like and follow your page, as well as tag one of their friends to get increased exposure and gain new followers.
18. Give out a free ebook
Want more email leads? Tempt your website visitors by offering them a fun, free ebook relating to your niche, upon subscribing to your newsletter. You don't have to write the ebook yourself - you can turn to one of the many freelancer recruitment platforms and have a professional do it for you at a relatively low cost.
19. Always list your social media handles
Your website; social media pages; email newsletter; email signature and, yes, even your business cards must include links or the URLs of all your social media profiles. This makes it easy and quick for your customers to find you and follow you online with just a few clicks!
20. Keep track of your online reputation
Sounds hard, but it's really not that difficult to monitor what's been said about your business online. Make a point to check your social media in the AM, and right after closing for the day, and set up Google alerts to be notified each time someone mentions you or your business anywhere on the web.
21. Upload Instagram stories
Free, easy, and, above all, fast: Instagram stories are all the rage these days, and that's because they work. Share snippets of your day-to-day life on the grind and show what really goes into running a business and delivering top-of-the line services. You may not believe it, but your customers will respect the work you put in and feel that much closer to you.
22. Host Facebook and Instagram live sessions
Have a new product or service to reveal? Want to hype up a new combo deal or discount? Set up your camera or smartphone and connect with your customers during a live session. This will also give you the opportunity to respond to their questions in real-time, and also promote what you're offering a lot more directly than any other way!
23. Source customer-generated content
Every bit of content counts, and, yes, that includes even that created by your customers! Ask customers to give you a shout-out on social and share the posts your busines is tagged in across your social media accounts. This content is organic and as such appears much more authentic - and, as you know by now, authenticity is what really wins the hearts of people.
24. Set up your own YouTube channel
You don't have to be provocative or silly to be a YouTuber! Find that sweet spot between what you're comfortable broadcasting and what will actually help your business and just go for it! Explainer videos, tips and tricks compilations and anything else relevant to what you do can act as a magnet for those who want to learn more about your niche - all while getting to know you and your business in the process, too!
25. Create original content
Content is a word that's been thrown around so much and often without clear definition - so it's ok if you're not too sure what it's all about. Anything that has to do with photos, videos, and digital media in general is what constitutes "content" - and you can learn more about it from reading our tips below!
26. Try your hand at video marketing
Given the fact that we've mentioned video marketing quite a few times so far, you can understand how useful it can be for your business's promotion. If you're still unsure about getting into it, well, don't. Even if you can't pull this off yourself, there's experts ready to help you get exactly what you need, STAT!
27. Nurture every lead
Treat every new lead as if they were already your customer. Make sure that you are professional in your communication and do what you say you will do in the time frame expected. Follow up regularly to keep you at the front of their minds.
28. Talk to your customers
Engage with your customers in person and online. Be appreciative of their business and let them know it! Make sure to ask questions when you can. They can provide valuable feedback and information to help you decide what’s working and what’s not working in your business.
Paid online ways to promote & grow your business
29. Use paid social media ads
The word "paid" should not discourage you, as it really doesn't take a fortune to gain exposure through social media advertising. Define your audience, start small, and, if you feel so inclined, scale your audience and budget when and if you're comfortable doing so.
Sounds like a lot of work? Don't stress yourself out, you can use a service like ours to create your ads using our simple online advertisement maker.
30. Buy advertising space in other websites & blogs
Make a list of websites and blogs that where you can showcase your business through banner and sidebar advertising. This is a good way to capture readers' attention and, if your ad is attractive and eye-catching, make them want to click on it and find out more about your business.
31. Use influencer marketing
Is there a local figure with a large social media following that's also popular among those in your target market? Approach this trendsetter/influencer and invite them to try our your products or services, and have them share their experience with their followers. This will generate organic exposure for your brand, and help promote your business to a well-defined audience of potential customers.
32. Promote your content
What good is anything you do to promote your business if it's not seen by the right people? Be proactive and splash your content on your social media, as well as try to crosspost it to relevant pages that might help you get more exposure. Don't let all those efforts go to waste!
33. Send out press releases
There are now many ways to send out press releases online without having to contact publications yourself. By publishing a press release on the web, you get to generate publicity for your business, as well as get quality backlinks for SEO purposes.
You can write your own press release or use a professional agency.
Pro tip: When you share something newsworthy and include important data, you’re more likely to get picked up by other publications.
34. Recruit a graphic designer for your branding
Trust a professional with creating your business logo and other related graphics. A cohesive and memorable brand identity will make you stand out from the competition and have customers instantly recognize your products or services, wherever they see your logo.
Free ways to promote & grow your business locally
35. Become an expert in your field
Regardless of how long you have been in business, you can always talk about your work in depth, and inspire others to pursue their dreams of succeeding in your field. Promoting yourself as an expert will promote your business in the process, too, all while helping establish your name as a respectable leader in your market.
36. Host an in-person workshop
Share your knowledge or showcase a skill by setting up a workshop. Offer a take-home item or printed materials to keep participants engaged and thinking about your business even after it’s over. Prepare for your next workshop by choosing from a variety of video presentation tools to help make it a success! https://motionden.com/video-maker/presentations
37. Join local networking groups or events
Connections and relationships mean more for your business in the long term. You can find both free and paid membership options. Make sure to be an active participant in whatever group you are a part of. Offer value, give support and answer questions. Look for networking opportunities in your particular industry.
38. Pursue speaking opportunities
Even if you think that public speaking is not your strongest suit, it's always worth giving it a try! You can start with talking to a small group during a retreat or meetup, and slowly make your way to larger crowds, where you can impart your hard-earned knowledge on how to run a business, and gain the respect of your peers.
39. Team up with other business owners for joint ventures
Collaborating increases exposure and helps both of your businesses grow.
Approach local business owners to create combined promotions that will earn you mutual exposure to your respective client bases. Strike a deal that is mutually beneficial, and make sure to keep it going, should it be succesful.
Pro tip: Partner with someone else in your industry or with someone whose business complements yours to get the most value.
40. Follow your competition - but don't copy what they do!
Keep an eye on the competition and evaluate what they do to see how you can use it to your advantage. Remember, though: don't have to replicate their exact strategy and tone to be successful! Find out what can work for you, adapt it to your brand and see how it can help you draw some of their customers to your business.
41. Your car or vehicle
You’re always out and about, so why not use your mode of transportation to help promote your business? Add a painted or vinyl logo to your car or company vehicle. Consider a removable magnetic option as a low-cost alternative.
Paid ways to promote & grow your business locally
42. Look into wearable advertising
Print your logo on T-shirts, pens, keychains, lanyards, and even on hydroflasks, which are highly popular among millenials! Hand out your branded merch to your customers for free and see your logo circulate around town. It's an amazing way to infiltrate the subconscious mind and further raise awareness for your brand.
43. Advertise on a billboard
Go big, as in, billboard-size big! Buy billboard advertising at your nearest highway or interstate section and take advantage of your local traffic! A catchy slogan or call to action, as well as a mention of your domain is a must to divert drivers to your location, at times even instanteneously!
When it comes to billboards, there's all sorts of different advertisement styles, and even differences like traditional & digital billboards.
P.S. Don’t forget to check out opportunities for billboards at local sporting venues, schools, or colleges.
44. Become a member of your local Chamber of Commerce
Being active offline is just as important as being active online. Your local Chamber of Commerce will help you network with other business owners in your area, and present opportunities for valuable collaborations and potential investments.
45. Sponsor local events
Anything from concerts, fairs, school plays and sports tournaments can be an opportunity to familiarize your brand with your community, and show that you are an active and contributing member to its various activities.
46. Support a charity drive
Find a cause you identify with and make a donation in your business's name, tying it with a local charity drive or walk/run. This will significantly raise your profile locally, and associate your name with your charity of choice, highlighting your efforts to give back both as a person and business.
47. Get friendly with your favorite radio station
Believe it or not, radio is alive and well. Record a small ad, sponsor a segment or join your favorite host for a Q & A that will both intrigue and inform audiences, making them want to find out more about you and your business.
48. Secure a feature on your local TV affiliate network
Regardless of your niche, you can always find an interesting subject you can expand on during a live segment on your local TV news or morning show. This will help establish you as an expert in your area, and allow you to gain the trust of those that are interested in what you have to offer.
49. Get coverage in your local newspaper
Connect with journalists and come up with a subject that will turn the spotlight on your business. Whether it be an article chronicling its evolution since its founding; a noteworthy occasion or business milestone, a local newspaper feature is a good way to gain brand name recognition in your area.
50. Invest in quality print materials
Flyers, brochures, catalogs, menus, stationary and envelopes: all printed materials that bear your business logo should be above average quality. An attractive look and feel can instantly make a great first impression, especially for those who have never met you or heard of your business before!
51. Don't overlook the power of business cards
Carry your business cards with you at all times: you never know when - or where - you may meet a prospect or potential partner. Business cards are still very useful in the digital age, and sharing one is a gesture that will help the card's recipient remember both you and your business in a tangible way.
52. Participate in business fairs
Setting up a booth in a business fair focused on your niche can be expensive, but it's a good way to network, put your marketing materials in the right hands, and test the waters in a B2B environment. Check out any upcoming fairs in your area and evaluate whether they are worth the time and monetary investment before you decide to take the plunge!
53. Attend conferences
There's always something happening in your field, so why not keep up with the latest developments? Attending conferences will add to your growth as a business owner, and put you in a position where you can mingle with other professionals that can become useful contacts.
54. Go old school with direct mail
Sending out newsletters, flyers and even postcards has been a tried-and-tested method yielding great results since well before the dawn of the Internet. Use that beautiful stationery you're going to print out to deliver your materials right at your customers' doorsteps, which will allow them to check out your products or services at the comfort of their own home.
55. Send personalized offers
What's stopping you from taking things to the next level?
Nothing, that is - so hit us up now!
Some quick tips to get you in the right direction
- Focus on one area of marketing at a time so you don’t get overwhelmed.
- Don’t be discouraged if something doesn’t work the way you planned. You may be surprised when something you never thought would work for your business brings in amazing results!
- Take the time to get to know your audience and stay on top of how their likes and dislikes change. Also, follow your competitors to keep up with what they are doing in your industry and discover new ways to market your business.
- Don’t be afraid to ask for the sale. No matter how you decide to market your business, make sure you put yourself out there. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain.
- Be sure to check out this link to discover how you can grow your business by utilizing video commercials in your business marketing! https://motionden.com/video-maker/commercial
Ready to set your plan in motion for your business's promotion?
These ideas are just a starting point.
Take the time to brainstorm even more ways to reach your target audience and always keep your eyes open for new ideas.
Let this guide be a motivation to where you can go in your marketing.
That being said, If you're not that well-versed in how to proceed with video marketing for your business's promotion, you can always turn to Motionden to create your bespoke business video that will promote your services in the most targeted and effective way possible.
We have an array of templates that can be tailored to your specific needs and resonate with your customer base, regardless of their age range and background.
So what are you waiting for? Get started marketing your business - and don’t forget to have fun!