There’s no need to plough huge amounts of money into a brand marketing campaign – not when there are several low-cost ways to spread the word about your business. Here are three of the best.
Social media marketing isn’t just a short-lived trend – if it was, it would’ve died out years ago! The enduring appeal of the likes of Facebook, Twitter and other social networks means social media remains a great platform for businesses of all sizes to promote their products, services and activities.
It’s important to note that entering the world of social media isn’t just about setting up a Facebook or Twitter account and hoping the masses come to you. There is an element of work involved in promoting your social networking pages, encouraging people to follow them and keeping their attention with posts that are both interesting and relevant to your target audience.
Despite this, social media remains a relatively low-cost method of brand marketing. It’s free to set up accounts on most social networks, so the only real cost involved is spending time on posting messages and monitoring mentions of your firm on a regular basis. Plus, if your content is good enough, your followers will do some of the work for you by sharing it with their friends!
It’s easy to believe that the advent of social media has all but killed off email as a marketing platform, but the truth is it’s still a thriving medium for many businesses – a survey conducted by StrongMail last year found three in five businesses were looking to increase spending on email in 2012.
However, this expenditure needn’t be very high; even a monthly or quarterly newsletter falls into the email category. If you operate an online shop, you can add an option to the registration or checkout process that lets customers opt into your newsletter. Or, you could ask shoppers at your bricks-and-mortar store whether they want to sign up and collect their email addresses at the till.
So, what should you actually include in your marketing emails? You could turn them into a regular round-up of new products or services, or use them to advertise competitions, sales and special offers. If you’ve set up a social media strategy as suggested above, use your newsletters to highlight any particular posts of interest – and therefore encourage recipients to follow your business on the likes of Facebook and Twitter.
The internet isn’t the only marketing platform that can offer great returns on investment. Everybody loves a freebie, so why not target those who can’t resist a giveaway by distributing promotional gifts?
This might seem quite expensive compared with the other two channels highlighted above, but research from the British Promotional Merchandise Association shows promotional items can deliver a return on investment equal to or higher than that associated with many other types of advertising.
Consider the stats – the cost per impression for a printed mug is just £0.001, while pens and umbrellas clock in at £0.003. This is compared with the £0.008 cost per impression for TV advertising!
Online firms could give away items with every order, while business owners attending trade events and fairs could offer free promotional products as a way to attract the attention of passersby. The variety of ways in which you can harness promotional merchandise makes the medium just as – if not more – versatile compared with the online platform.