Many costs come with starting a business. These include operational expenses like staffing, inventory, office space, and so on. The amount entrepreneurs spend depends on the type of business.
But, at the minimum, they need capital and running costs. Without a doubt, it can be challenging to raise enough money. That means business owners must prioritize spending. For many startups, things like marketing will not top the list.
Yet, how can the business hope to get visibility without putting itself out there? Well, our article will show you some money-saving marketing tips for startups. Let’s dive into it.
1. Don’t Do it Alone
Unless you have some background in marketing, it is a good idea to get some help from the experts. At this point, you must be thinking, “Wait, the idea is to avoid spending money as much as possible. So, how can hiring experts be a good idea? And, aren’t marketing agencies expensive?”
We do understand why this would be a concern. But, having a startup branding agency in your team has some advantages. First, they have the know-how in managing marketing for startups. They do not depend on trial and error to get results. You could lose a lot of money using the wrong platforms or techniques.
Such agencies have invested in tools, training, and resources that will give you a leg up. They have industry knowledge and networks that as a startup you may not know about.
Don’t be afraid to reach out to such agencies. Most are willing to work with the budget you have. And yes, there is no shame in negotiating like crazy.
And, remember, for them, it is an opportunity to build long-term relationships. One day, when your business grows to a multi-million dollar venture, they will reap the benefits of starting the journey with you.
2. Digital Marketing Will Save You Tons of Cash
Startup marketing can get pretty expensive depending on the channel you use. Placing an advert in print or electronic media will swallow your budget overnight. Yet, you may not see any ROI for your spending.
The digital platform has tons of marketing opportunities available. Here are some reasons why it is a fantastic option.
- Availability of free marketing opportunities. The business does not, for instance, use any money to open social media accounts.
- Cost-effective options that allow you to control the marketing budget. The cost of analog advertising depends on how much the media house is charging. But, you can decide on how much to spend on social media advertising. And, the business can set up a website using free web builders.
- Tons of channels where the business can market itself. They include websites, social media platforms, local listings, and Google My Business.
- Ability to use different marketing strategies. These include SEO, content generation, video content, link building, and storytelling.
- Flexibility in implementation. Once a print or electronic advert is out, there is no changing it. At least, not without incurring additional costs. But, it is easy to pull down a video or change website content with zero cost implications.
- Networking opportunities in professional groups or platforms like LinkedIn.
Do take the time to explore digital marketing further. You will love everything it has to offer. But, it is important to do it well, if you hope to stand above the clutter.
Always have it at the back of your mind that the competition on online platforms is immense. Everyone is hoping to capture the attention of the audience. So, your content must be relevant, unique, interesting, and responsive to a market need.
3. Take Advantage of PR Opportunities
Think about your typical shopping behavior. Before buying the product you may read customer reviews. Referrals from family and friends have more weight than what the company says, right? PR is a third-party endorsement of the brand or products. Here are some ways to go about it.
- Form relationships with the media by providing newsworthy content. Editors and journalists are always looking for material. Become the go-to source for information specific to your industry. They will often quote the source, so it gives the business free publicity.
- Contribute to media platforms like Help A Reporter Out (HARO) and Forbes Council. You must keep up with emerging topics or hot trends. Remember, the content has to be relevant, offers new insights, and is newsworthy.
- Actively seek and showcase testimonials on your website. Happy customers will not have an issue giving positive feedback.
- Have a corporate social responsibility program that focuses on the community. Organizing neighborhood cleanups can get your picture in the media. Sharing such content on your digital platforms will show people that you care. Audiences tend to engage better with such content than hard-sell marketing language.
- Participate in industry events for an opportunity to showcase what your company has to offer. Industry awards are worth pursuing. You get your face in the media, and posting the winning badges on your site builds credibility.
4. Influencer Marketing Works
Partner with influencers or bloggers with a large social media following. Ok, your eyebrows have gone up a notch reading this part right? After all, where would a startup get money to hire a celebrity influencer?
Well, we are not talking about the Kardashians here. The new kids in town are micro-influencers. They typically have about 10,000 to 50,000 followers. Many businesses are turning to them for various reasons.
Micro-influencers are affordable, available, and more authentic. Most start by focusing on niche areas, making targeting easier. Some are willing to work with products, instead of monetary payment. There is a lot more room for negotiation with them than those with a larger following.
A startup can get brand visibility without spending tons of cash. We have shared cost-effective, workable solutions.
Unless you have the expertise, do seek expert advice from startup branding agencies. It is a niche area of specialization where they focus on new companies. They understand the challenges and best methods of overcoming them.
Digital marketing is effective, cost-efficient, and provides tons of opportunities. Other avenues worth exploring are PR and influencer marketing.
Start by developing a marketing plan with clear goals. It makes it easier to allocate specific strategies if you know what you are working towards.
Good luck with your new business!