It’s widely accepted among most business professionals that marketing remains one of the best ways to expand the reach and penetration of a firm.
However, for many bosses, effective marketing often feels beyond their scope – particularly for Small to Medium-sized Enterprises (also known as SMEs).
Whether the constraints are time or money-related, many firms simply don’t invest as much as they should in their own self-promotion – frequently resulting in smaller companies being at a considerable disadvantage compared to their bigger rivals.
Simple, fast marketing ideas suitable for smaller firms on a tight budget
In the not-so-distant past the options for company marketing and promotion were largely limited just to traditional media outlets like newspapers, magazines, radio and television. However, with the growth of the internet, email, social media and other web-based services there is now a huge range of options available to firms – even those on the tightest of budgets. Below are just four ways you could start marketing your firm at a fraction of the cost of traditional media.
Set up a website
It should go without saying but, in today’s modern landscape, pretty much all companies should have a website (even just a single page site can be enough in some cases). While it’s true that engaging with social media will also help promote your firm, having a website lets you impart far more information (in far more depth) than simple social profile pages. Also, having a website lends credence and authority to your firm – plus will mean you can have a dedicated email address i.e. firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, don’t forget the considerable advantages that can be gained from Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and web marketing.
Engage positively and proactively with social media
These days clients expect to be able to find firms on the major social channels – Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Instagram, etc. You should also be aware of the smaller channels that might benefit your firm, depending on your sector. For example, Pinterest’s demographic is primarily female so can be particularly good if you specialise in female-oriented goods or services. Posting proactively and regularly on social channels is a great way to engage positively with your existing client base while also potentially attracting new followers to your firm and its pages.
Build a mailing list and engage in email marketing
Social channels are great for posting to many people, but if you want to properly personalise the tone and content of the message you’re sending, there’s simply no substitute for email marketing. As well as being able to tailor the text and images of the emails you send depending on the recipient, you can also brand your emails – even if you use mailing systems like Google’s very popular Gmail platform. Using business email signature Gmail software, you can design headers and email signature footers that make an impression and are immediately recognisable as being from your firm.
Publish client testimonials
Marketing and advertising are all well and good but nothing rivals word-of-mouth recommendations. Speak to your existing clients and ask them to supply you with testimonials outlining why they work with you, why they would recommend your services and the benefits of working with you. You should then add this positive feedback to your website, social pages and – if appropriate – printed brochures, etc.