Top 60 ways to promote your business
Finding a product or service to sell is only half the story. Now you have to get out there and tell people about it. In the days before the internet and social media, promoting your business meant spending a fortune on advertising or PR services, a high cost for a small business trying to get off the ground. Not anymore.
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There is a variety of online and offline mechanisms to market your business, such as social networking, advertisements, word of mouth and outdoor advertising, some pricier than others. Here are 60 ways you can promote whatever business, product or service you have, whether it’s offline or online.
Create a brand & logo
Don’t be fooled by how simplistic this first tip may seem. Widespread brand recognition is your ultimate goal, and your business needs to inspire credibility and persuade others to spread the word about your work.
You need to create a brand you can build on from the start. Start by taking inventory of your business’ unique value proposition, its personality, and the values that define it. Then you can start to think about your visual brand.
Hiring a design firm may be costly, but there are popular design services on the web, that can provide a selection of custom logo designs for your brand, and at an affordable price. You can even create a logo using an online logo maker if you’re on a very tight budget. Your visual brand may evolve with your business, but you need to start with something on which you can build your business’ reputation.
Answer Questions On Quora
With over 300 million monthly visitors, Quora has now become the perfect place to expose your business to a vast audience and build your authority online. You can start by creating a Quora profile in the same niche or industry that your business lies in and answer questions.
Instead of directly advertising your business in your Quora answers, try to make your answers more informative and useful for the audience. You should mention your business and company website in the most organic way possible – as a clear solution to the problem. The idea is to get more upvotes, followers, and engagement to build a community of high-quality potential leads and establish yourself as an expert in the topics that matter the most in your business.
44 Methods to Advertise Your Business for Free
The best marketing plans draw on a multitude of strategies: social media marketing, email marketing campaigns, flash sales, in-store events, even experiential marketing—whatever your business has the resources to take on, take them. Use every opportunity you get to share your product or service with the world (and, ideally, turn them into paying customers).
Start your search with this list of mostly free, relatively low-lift, but definitely fun ways to advertise your business. Remember that each method for how to advertise your business comes with its own nuances and tricks. Business advertising is an art, not a science.
1. Reward Social Media Sharing
It’s great to find new customers, but it’s also important to show your appreciation for those who are already loyal to your brand—especially if they’re willing to shout it from the proverbial rooftops.
Providing discounts to your followers who share your brand on social media rewards their customer loyalty, and gives you a boost. After all, word-of-mouth endorsements are still the best form of advertising around. Engaging with and rewarding your customers is a great way to advertise your business for free.
2. Cultivate a Cadre of Brand Ambassadors
George Clooney probably fetches a pretty penny for his work as Nespresso spokesman, but there are other, more accessible methods for how to advertise your business with brand ambassadors.
Focus on social media influencers who might not be Clooney-level celebrities, but who have established themselves as prominent figures in a circle that relates to your brand. Gaining an endorsement from an influencer strengthens your brand’s presence and legitimacy in that world. If you go this route, though, make sure your social media influencer campaign is legal.
3. Look Within for Positive Word of Mouth
Your strongest advocates for your business might just be under your own roof. An employee willing to share positive things about the company on their personal social media accounts can grab the attention of potential new customers. Therefore, incentivizing that behavior is a savvy business move and a great way to advertise your business for free. Platforms like Dynamic Signal make it easy for businesses to encourage their employees to serve as brand advocates for their employers online.
4. Have Fun With Interactive Content
Who can resist the allure of a clever internet quiz? Putting interactive content on your website, blog, or social media platforms is both fun and informative for your customers. And quizzes and surveys that encourage users to share their results on social media expands your brand’s reach further. This has the added bonus of converting your loyal brand followers into brand ambassadors on their own social media platforms.
5. Let Your Customers Peek Behind the Scenes
Whether you use YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, or Snapchat, share a behind-the-scenes video. This could be an interview with a member of your staff, a tour of a manufacturing facility, or a montage of your participation in a recent trade show or industry event. Giving your customers a sneak peak into what it’s like on the inside is another creative way to advertise your business for free.
Giving customers a greater sense of what goes into making your product is a transparent way to interact with your customers, which’ll give you a credibility boost. It also lets you show off your team and your brand’s personality, and define your company’s unique point of view within your market. That’s how to advertise your business in the era of social video.
6. Play Game Show Host for a Day
Alternatively, ask those who are already loyal to your brand to participate in a contest where they generate testimonials or share positive stories about your business online under a designated hashtag. That can generate a lot of buzz in a short amount of time.
7. Put a Face to Your Company’s Name With Live Video
CEOs such as Mark Zuckerberg, Elon Musk, and Steve Jobs are inextricably linked with their brands. Customers feel like they know them personally, and that is part of the fabric of the brand loyalty that Facebook, Tesla, and Apple enjoy. Using live video through Facebook or other social media channels can humanize you and your business, and make any customer even more likely to become a loyalist.
8. Trade in a Thousand Words for a Picture (or Video)
If that adage is true, then Instagram lets you do a lot of talking in a very short amount of time. While Facebook dominates in terms of overall number of users, Instagram followers for certain brands—including titans like Nike and Starbucks —have surged lately. Certain industries, such as restaurants, have been transformed by the platform. And with younger demographics turning away from television and spending more time on social media, there’s a huge benefit to focusing your marketing efforts here. It’s important to learn how to advertise your business using this surging platform.