15 Tips on How to Market Your Business for Free

by Cinnamon McCann · 0 comments

How_to_market_your_busness_for_freeMarketing your business doesn’t mean you have to spend a ton of money to get in front of your potential customers.  With all of the social media channels and blogs that exist, you now have the ability to get in front of eager customers for free.  Because there are so many options, it’s easy to waste a bunch of time and become confused and overwhelmed.

I hope to offer some relief and guidance in this article that will allow you to save time and implement your plan quickly.  I will go over various marketing techniques and strategies you can employ to increase exposure for your business.  Don’t feel like you have to employ all of the tips in this article. Try to pick 3 or 4 tips and stay consistent with them.

Before you start: There are a couple steps you should do before employing the marketing tips mentioned later in this article.

important_steps_when_marketing_your_business

Step 1: If you don’t already have a website or blog, it’s important that you get one. When you start to expose potential customers to your products and/or services they are going to want to go to your website to learn more about you and possibly make purchases.
Your website has about 6 seconds to convince prospects that your product or service can solve their problems, satisfy their need or make them feel better. Be sure you are conveying that on your website.

Step 2: Set up your analytics. You want to be able to measure the effectiveness of your marketing efforts and this is where your web analytics comes in.  It will give you a better idea as to where your customers are coming from, what keywords they are using to find you, how long they are staying on your website and which pages are more popular.  This will give you a visual indication as to what is working and what is not working.  You can sign up to get a free website analytic tools with Google.

Step 3: Have the ability to capture leads on your website.  If people like your website, products or services, you want a way to keep in contact with them so that you can continue to market to them directly.  This is typically done by setting up some sort of email sign-up form or giving a free item in exchange for their email address (more on this later).

Step 4: Set up appropriate social media channels.  You don’t need to sign up for every social media website that exists.  You need to have a good understanding as to who your ideal clients are and where they hang out online. If you are in a visual business Pinterest, Instagram and Facebook maybe good options for you.  My personal favorite is Youtube, but go where you feel comfortable.

Step 5: Provide free amazing content.  You can’t assume strangers are going to come to your website and automatically know the awesomeness you and your company provide.  You have to show people that you are credible and you know what you are talking about. Amazing free content helps you demonstrate this while creating a relationship.  It allows potential customers to test out your awesomeness before they buy.

Okay, you are all set. It is important to remember that effective marketing is all about consistency. You can’t do one or two things once and expect a stampeded of people to come to you. Be consistent and patient.

tips_to Market_your_business

Tip # 1
Turn Your Website into a 24-hour sales person. Your website is your 24-hour-7-days-a-week-never-calling-out-sick-never-out-on-vacation-salary-not-required-sales person. Of course your website allows you to sell your products online, but it can also help convert the regular web surfer into an interested prospect. If someone is interested enough to come to your website, you don’t want to lose them. This is where your free amazing content can warm the lead and develop a relationship with them.  Then if they really like you, you can encourage visitors to automatically set an appointment with you with services like Vcita or TimeTrade or leave you a voice message directly on your website with services like SpeakPipe.

If they still want to kick the tires a bit but want to stay in touch, that is where your email signup form comes in handy. You can offer a nice gift, special free training, coupons, interview series, webinars or resource guides in exchange for their email address and contact info. You can use a company like MailChimpto set up your opt-in offers for free.


Tip # 2
Help a Reporter Out (www.helpareporterout.com). HARO is a free email list that will send you daily email alerts about various media exposure opportunities from various journalists and bloggers.


Tip #3
Make a special appearance on someone’s blog or website. This is often referred to as guest posting (or guest blogging). Typically a website or blog owner will allow you to contribute content, usually in the form of an article, webinar, training etc., in exchange for exposing you to their audience of people.

If you are struggling to get people to your website guest posting is a great way to gain exposure.  You want to find blogs that have your ideal clients and write amazing content for the blog/website owner. For example, let’s say you are a lawyer and you write for a lawyer blog. Chances are your ideal clients aren’t hanging out on lawyer blogs, but hundreds of other lawyers are.

You want to focus on blogs that would have your ideal clients. So if you are a patent and trademark attorney, your content may be best suited for small business and entrepreneur websites, inventors blogs, etc.

When you are searching for blogs or websites to contribute to, it would help to search for websites that already have great traffic. This way you can increase your exposure and increase your search engine ranking with search engines such as Google. You can use a website like Alexa to obtain an estimated search engine ranking report for various websites.

Give your absolute best content you can push onto the computer pages! Good stuff, exceptional stuff that makes people talk and think, “Wow she really knows her stuff.” That’s what brings people over to your website. Mediocre content will just have people leaving uninterested and forget about you. Leave a good impression.


Tip #4
Go Live. You can broadcast to hundreds of thousands of people live for free. You can do a live fashion show for your boutique, provide advice, demonstrate your singing ability, conduct customer q & a segments, makeup tutorials, interviews, virtual book signings, training, cooking shows, the list can go on and on. Get creative because your options are limitless. These live  streaming websites have large audiences all across the world and it can get you instant exposure. Livestream.com and Ustream.com are a couple of the sites that have a large audience and a stable video streaming platform.  Websites like Vokle, Spreecast and Google Hangouts are great websites to use if you would like to add additional hosts or guests to your live stream events.

Tip #5
Get help from the Crowd. No need to rush to banks for “hard to get” small business loans. Now you can go to the internet community and have them fund your next project or venture, while increasing your exposure. Crowd funding has become increasingly more popular over the years. It has allowed entrepreneurs to take matters into their own hands and provides their potential customers the ability to assist with building the dream. You can check out websites like Indiegogo or Kickstarter to find out more.

Tip #6
Court your customers. Creating life long customers for your business is a lot like dating. Show your customers respect, take time to nurture the relationship and add value. If you  create value rich content for your market, it will demonstrate your worth to new customers and continue a good relationship with current customers. You can use social media to engage your audience and ask them questions and provide information they want or would find useful. If you are a restaurant owner, you can add recipes for a dish of the month. If you sell clothes you can provide a resource guide on the appropriate undergarments for certain dress styles. If you are a hairstylist, you can give information to educate your customers on how to maintain their hair in between salon visits.  Of course all of these are examples, but I’m sure you get the idea.

Tip #7
Get offline.
Sure spending your life behind a computer screen is a lot easier then getting dressed, going out and meeting people.  Online relationships are important but let’s face, it doesn’t trump human connections. Consider attending conferences that will have your ideal clients in attendance. You can even teach workshops or seminars at your local library. Most libraries will allow you to use their conference rooms for free.  They are great for workshops and increasing your exposure.  You can also check out websites like Meetup to meet people that share your same common interests.

Tip #8
Create digital deposits. Creating ecourses or eproducts allows you to sell an unlimited supply of products 24 hours a day and typically the only thing it will cost you is the time to create it. It also helps increase exposure for your business. You can use free options like Prezi, Screencastomatic, Freeconferencing, a smart phone or Youtube, to create and market it. You can use websites like E-Junkie or Gumroad to sell it.

Tip  # 9
Interview the experts. Interviewing experts in your field can be a great way of gaining exposure, meetings new and exciting people and increasing your search engine ranking. It is important to understand who your ideal clients are and what type of experts they would be interested in seeing. Do you sell athletic clothing?  You could interview local and national athletes.  Are you selling beauty products?  You can interview celebrity makeup artists. Are you a real estate broker?  You can interview some of the tops selling real estate agents in your area or across the country.

These interviews will allow you to meet interesting people and learn from their expertise.  More importantly when people are searching for these various experts or the subject matter they provide, your website and interviews will come up in search engines.  This brings more people to your website to purchase your products or services.

Tip # 10
Get on Craig’s list. If you haven’t heard of Craig’s List, it’s a free online classified in most major cities and countries.  As the purchase of newspapers and ads for classifieds have decreased, Craig’s List has still managed to be one of the top online go to places for listing everything from room rentals to personal ads for free.  Creating ads on Craig’s List is pretty straight forward.  But if you want to create ads that stand out, check out a website called GoGoPin.

Tip # 11
Start a Podcast. Tap into the audience of millions of podcast listeners nationwide on iTunes and other various podcast platforms. Podcasts provide great exposure.  If you make it your mission to provide your listeners with great value and entertainment. You can be exposed to hundreds of thousands of people very easily. For more information on how to create a podcast check out Pat Flynn’s extremely detailed lessons on creating a podcast.

Tip #12
Get on the radio. Internet radio has become a great platform for people to share their message and gain exposure.  There are various websites that already have an audience of people.  Blog Talk Radio is one of the more popular internet radio platforms where you can set up a free account and go on air in no time.

Tip # 13
You can YouTube. YouTube is great for a variety of reasons.  First it’s owned by Google, so when it comes to search engine optimization with video, YouTube beats most of it’s competition.

Secondly, once you start gaining traction and getting more and more people to view your videos, YouTube will pay you to create videos with it’s YouTube Partners Program.

Lastly, YouTube provides a social media platform that allows you to gain exposure from quality leads.  People typically search for videos on YouTube and if someone does a search and find your videos, (and you used your keywords and title appropriately) chance are they are interested in your content.  They searched for your type of information and found you versus sending a random tweet into cyber space and hoping they will stumble upon you.

Tip # 14
Use the power of webinars. Webinars are one of my favorite forms of marketing.  I love them because they allow you to accomplish several important things when it pertains to marketing.  It allows you to capture leads.  People that sign up for your webinars are typically interested in the content you are providing and if they are not quite ready to purchase immediately, you still have their email address to further foster the relationship.

It gives you the opportunity to demonstrate your expertise while providing tremendous value to your potential and current customers allowing you to increase your sales.

You can grow your customer base internationally.  You are no longer stuck with only doing business with people in your city or town.  You are able to reach people all across the world with webinars.

Tip # 15
Stop going at it alone. Joining forces with a company or person that offers products or services that compliment your business. This will allow you to reach a new audience of potential clients.

So now that you are equipped with some ideas, take action!  Pick three or fours tips that you will commit to doing consistently.  I can’t wait to hear about your results.

If you have any questions or you have free marketing tips that I didn’t include, please leave them in the comments section below.

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