Advertising your small business for free has never been easier. With the Internet, there are tons of different ways you can advertise without spending a dime. Here are seven options that might benefit your small business.
7 Free Ways to Advertise Your Small Business
1. Email Marketing
Have your customers sign up for free email newsletters, and you’ll be able to garner repeat business without spending any money. The key to an email marketing campaign is to offer good deals through email that aren’t accessible elsewhere. You’ll also want to be consistent with your marketing campaign. You don’t want customers to forget you between emails, but you also don’t want them to feel that you’re constantly flooding their inboxes. Sending out an email about once a month is a good option. You can include information about new developments in your business, tips for using your products and services, and, of course, access to good deals and discounts!
2. Social Networking
This is the primary way that many small businesses are advertising these days. Start a blog, a Twitter feed, and a Facebook page. You’ll be able to use these tools to connect with hundreds of potential local customers and to stay connected to those who already like your products and services. The key here is to simply stay connected with your customers – to make them feel that they’re dealing with a company made up of real people and not a faceless entity. Again, offering good deals — even giveaways — through these media will boost your business’s social networking standings and help you connect with even more customers.
3. Customer Incentives
Getting repeat business is as easy as offering repeat customers’ discounts. Getting new business is as simple as offering old customers referral bonuses for bringing in new customers. While this will end up costing you because you’ll have to discount your products or services, in the long run it’s a virtually free way to advertise. Customers who feel they can get something in return for talking up your business are sure to spread the word about your products and services!
4. Press Releases for Events
You can’t always get free newspaper advertising for your business, but if you’re hosting an event or experiencing major changes, you might be able to get local papers to publish a press release for free. One great way to get a press release published for your business is to host an open house around the holidays and to do a charity raffle during that time. Newspapers love to advertise charity-related local efforts during the holiday season, so this can land you a press release fairly easily!
5. Local Online Listings in Directories
There are tons of websites that offer local directories where you can list your business for free. Many times, these directories are industry-specific. For instance, if your business deals with the wedding industry, popular wedding websites may offer an online directory where engaged people can check out the services of caterers, florists, DJs, and other wedding-related businesses in their area. Finding these local listings is easy, and basic listings are usually free.
6. Google Local and Google Maps
Google is currently offering another type of local directory listing that is great for small businesses. Because they want to improve their maps and local search functions, you can fill out information about your local business for free, and it will be added to Google Maps and Google Local.
7. Sell on eBay
If you sell a product, putting some of your inventory up on eBay is a good way to get some cross-selling for free. Setting up a full-blown vendor site on eBay has minimal costs, but simply listing a few items that can then link back to your company’s actual website is free, and this is a great way to get new online traffic for your business.
Every business should consider taking advantage of these seven options simply because they don’t cost you a dime! They may not be the most effective forms of advertising for getting you new business, but the return on investment is great since there are no out-of-pocket expenses!
And while you can use many of these seven free advertising techniques to help your business, there comes a day when free advertising alone is not enough. To help manage cash flow and to earn rewards for advertising, consider business credit cards with rewards. When managed responsibly, they can be a great way to get capital immediately to bring in more business and to boost your bottom line.