7 Cost Effective Ways to Market Your Small Business in the New Year
If the uncertainty of the economy has left you feeling a bit weary of how to plan for next year, and especially how to budget for your marketing, you're definitely not alone. Most small businesses and startups tend to operate on a fairly tight budget, and times like this can certainly exacerbate that.
When looking at where costs can be cut, a lot of small business owners quickly place their marketing on the chopping block. With rents, insurance, employees and all the standard overhead costs of managing a business, it's no surprise that marketing quickly gets filed into the "nice to have" category and not the "need to have" bucket.
I could wax poetic about the fact that times like these are the absolute best time to lean into your marketing budget, because everyone else is scaling theirs back and leaving a TON of opportunity for you to sweep in, but instead lets talk about some cost-effective ways you can still market your business in the new year without breaking the bank.
7 Cost-Effective Marketing Options for Small Businesses
1. Optimize and leverage your Google Business Profile
This will literally always be the number one FREE way to market your business. Recent data shows that Google processes over 99,000 searches every single second, meaning more than 8.5 billion searches each day! Routinely updating your profile with posts and updates will help keep you at the top of SERPs (search engine result pages) and get you in front of more potential customers.
2. Start email marketing!
The return on investment for email marketing continues to be higher than any other marketing platform: The average ROI through email marketing is $36 for every $1 spent. So start collecting email addresses. Start fostering those leads by staying top of mind. And when someone tries to tell you that email marketing is dead, tell them they're crazy.
3. Get free PR with HARO
HARO (Help a Reporter Out) is a popular online service that connects journalists who are looking for expertise to include in their published work with the people who actually have that expertise. Create a free account, set your communication preferences, and submit pitches to articles where you can add value to get yourself published and reach new audiences.
4. Use a blog to drive web traffic
Blogging is a fantastic way to share helpful and relevant information that your customers and clients want to hear, and to establish yourself as a thought leader in your industry. It's also a great way to drive traffic to your website, which can contribute to sales but also help you grow that email list for your email marketing!
5. Get those reviews!
Once you're gotten your Google Business Profile up and running optimally, start using it to get reviews. We all know where we go when we're looking for any business imaginable. And we all know we read the reviews. Let potential customers see the social proof of your work by asking existing and past clients for reviews.
6. Leverage social media to engage with your Ideal Clients
We all know the power social media has to help us reach customers. But one major benefit of social media that is oftentimes overlooked by those looking to grow their business is the ability it offers to let you interact with your ideal client profiles. Take some time to understand the inner workings of your ICPs (and here's a free resource if you need help with that), and go out and find THEM on social media. Interact with their profiles, develop authentic relationships with them, and foster those potential leads.
7. Spend a little and get a ton out of Local SEO
Local SEO, which are specific tactics that help your business rank higher in location-specific search results, can be a real game changer for small businesses that primarily target customers from a specific geographical region or area. Local SEO services, like we offer here at Anchor Watch Marketing, are a truly affordable way to help manage your Google presence specifically to reach those local customers, so you know that you're reaching the right people in the right place.
Marketing your business in the new year doesn't have to add to your financial stress. Investing your time and effort into cost-effective tactics can help ensure your marketing is still working to help you reach your sales and business goals.
And if any of these things seem like something you want to tackle, but you don't have the time to manage it all on your own, Anchor Watch Marketing offers plenty of options and service levels to help you feel more in control of your marketing.