The marketing game is sometimes trial and error. Tower Press has had great successes and terrible ones, we're always trying new ways to reach people and sometimes have to get creative when funds are tight. Sometimes there's just not a lot of room in the budget to spend a ton on Google Ads or social media. Most small businesses are working with limited funds, but there are ways to get your name out there and reach your current clients that won't have you whipping out that credit card. Here are 4 ways you can promote your brand that won't cost a fortune.
1. Newsletters We love Mailchimp (and there are tons of other great platforms like Klaviyo and Constant Contact). Most of these platforms are free up to a certain point (ie: your list gets too large, in which case, yay!), and offer some small bits of coding you can paste in the back end of your website that generates a pop up welcoming new site visitors and asking for their email to stay in contact. Contact them! They signed up for a reason, and by doing weekly or bi-weekly check-ins, you're creating some serious brand awareness.
Don't just use this opportunity to sell, sell, sell. Sure, we all like to give discount codes but then your clients will come to always expect a sale. The main point of a newsletter is to spark a conversation! We are real human people (some of us) craving connection to other human people. Talk about your process, a hard lesson you've learned recently, introduce your audience to a member of your team, or share your Spotify playlist!
2. Host events or teach a class This may cost you a little extra time and a small budget for catering, but gathering a group of people together is the oldest marketing tool in the world. Good ol' fashioned networking can do wonders for your marketing efforts. You're putting your face in front of new faces (and hey, it's a great chance to hand out your killer business cards ehhh?). If you have a skill you want to share with people, offer a class! Teach people in your community how to stage their product photos, an intro to Quickbooks, or maybe a small workshop on how to make something. If you're an expert in a particular field, there's no reason not to shout that from the rooftops. Mingle with new people in other respective fields, collect referrals, and boom!
3. Utilize Youtube or social media for videos Almost all of us have a smartphone with video capabilities. Mount that baby and go live! I know that putting yourself out there is hard (even terrifying) because suddenly there's an audience, but product photos after product photos really don't tell anyone your story. Maybe do a live Q&A or talk about how you started your business. Put together a quick IGTV weekly series talking about other women founders you admire. Do a time lapse of you making a product from start to finish. There are so many ways to utilize video which carries your newsletter voice into your actual, human voice! People are more drawn to other people they can relate to and we're all really yearning for more authenticity these days. Be your goofy self! You will see a lot of videos from us coming soon :)
4. Giveaways and contests This will require you to (obviously) give away a product or service, but you may be able to nab some new potential clients this way! One of our favorite ways to do this is as follows:
By asking people to tag others in separate comments, you'll be able to move up in the algorithm (hello, viral content!). Look how many likes and comments this received (which is wayyy more than usual for us). This contest got us around 500 new followers, some of which converted to clients. We ran it for a full week.
While there are TONS of other ways to promote your biz without spending $10 a day, these are 4 which we utilize all the time. Marketing doesn't have to be expensive. While it's true you have to "spend money to make money," this really applies to your time, effort and creativity as well! What are some other cost-effective ways you market your business? We'd love to hear your feedback!