Alternative Ways To Advertise Your Business


Advertising a business is perhaps one of the most important factors in its success. You can spend money researching products and looking at the market and your competition. You can spend time making sure your products and services are perfect and that your customer service is polished and professional, and this is fantastic. Having great products and services, offering an excellent user experience and standing out from the crowd will help you retain customers and build a fabulous reputation in the field. But, it's no good if no one knows about you in the first place. 

Large companies and international businesses have massive budgets to throw at their marketing campaigns. They employ digital marketing teams; social media managers and they attract the biggest stars to feature in their TV and online video ads. Some of the biggest brands in the world are spending upwards of $2 billion on advertising, and in most cases they've publicized, it's paying off quite handsomely for them. For every $1 online marketplace, Etsy is spending on advertising, they see $1600 in sales

But, if you are just starting out, or still pushing to get noticed and start turning a decent profit, then you probably won't have billions to spend on marketing or advertising. Instead, you need to think outside of the box and find the best ways to reach your potential audience without spending more than you can afford. 

If you are marketing on a budget, one of the first things that you should do is find your audience. If your target market is 70+ retirees, you don't want to spend huge amounts on social media promotions that they will never see. Sure, it's a good idea to be online for the few that will see you as well as any family and friends that may pay the message on, but this isn't where you want to focus your efforts. Finding your audience means you can stop wasting money trying to talk to people that aren't interested, instead focusing on pulling in potential long-term customers. As you grow, you can start to widen your field to include new targets. Now, let's take a look at some alternative ways to advertise your business. 

Packaging

When you visit somewhere new for the first time, one of the best ways to find out what shops are around is looking at the shopping bags that people are holding. These bags may also advertise sales, special offers or new products. They're a great way of gaining increased footfall to a brick and mortar store. Even now countries across the world are charging for plastic bags in an attempt to reduce waste and increase recycling, it's worth either carrying on printing on plastic, for the shoppers who do choose to use one, or switching to recyclable paper bags. 

If you run an online business or have an online department, then Custom branded mailer boxes can have a similar effect. They don't get seen by as many, but they can still get noticed and drive traffic to your site. Try to make sure your packing is eye-catching, simple and contains necessary information like price points and your web address, without being overwhelming. Consumers should be able to pick out the information they need to find you at a quick glance, without needing to study the side on a box. 

Guest Posting 

If you've got a website, it can be hard to get found without spending vast amounts of money on social media promotions or by hiring an SEO professional. You can put the time and effort in yourself to engage on social media and start to build a following and brushing up your SEO. But, it will still take time to grow. When you are building up a business, you don't always have time. You need traffic and sales fast. 

Guest posting is an alternative and effect way to get noticed online. Find other websites in your niche, take a look around, get a feel for their style and who their audience is. Then, send them a pitch. Tell them how much you love their site, and how you feel you could compliment it. If they allow you to guest post, you might be able to include a bio and link to your site. Immediately telling a new audience about yourself and giving them a way to find you. Do this as much as you possibly can. 

Business Cards 

Business cards may not seem very alternative, but so many new businesses and professionals neglect them completely in favor of digital marketing. If you want to be seen by as many people as possible, business cards are a fantastic way to do it. Keep them simple with just an eye-catching logo, tagline and your web address. If you want to make them stand out, go for a square or small card that's a little different. You can get cards printed relatively cheaply, then start handing them out and leaving them everywhere you go. You never know who might pick one up. 

Flyers can be equally useful. Get some printed with your basic information, making sure key points can be picked out at a quick glance and start leaving them on car windscreens and posting them through letterboxes. Other print advertising you may find effective can include posters, billboards, newspaper and magazine adverts and articles and promotional materials. 

Paid Word of Mouth Advertising 

Word of mouth will always be one of the most effective forms of advertising. People trust other people, they take them at their word, and they value their recommendations. But, getting people talking about a new business can be difficult. So, why not pay someone to do it? Find a freelancer, or someone you know that's looking for a bit of extra cash of keen to try your products and pay them to talk to people about your services. They could tell their friends and family, check in to your location online and even get into conversations with strangers on the street. 

For the best results, utilize as many methods as you can. Find your audience and let them know. Once you've grown a loyal following, word will start to travel to a wider audience, and you'll start to see growth.


I hope you enjoyed this article about effective alternative methods to advertise your small business or startup.

Interested in more articles about advertising and markting?

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