You have made the big step. Finally you have put your great idea into practice and you are now running your very own business. Nevertheless, no matter how great your idea is, without customers and clients it is just that, a great idea.
You have started you own business, sorted out all of the necessary paperwork, sought information about all of the options available to you. You have looked into all sources of financial support and even all kinds of small business insurance. If you want to know what options you have and ask yourself, for example, at Hiscox Professional Indemnity you can find a lot of useful information. That is all great, however, what you need next are customers. It’s now time to see how you can market your fledgling company with as little money as possible.
Get to know your potential customers
Before you start with your marketing strategy you need a clear picture about who your potential customers are. Are they other small companies, big multi-nationals, professionals, urban couples, mothers, families or children? This may sound basic but being clear about the types of customers you want to attract is crucial when it comes to making sure your marketing strategy is fine-tuned and adapted towards them.
You will need a blog
Blogs are an effective and fun way to promote your business and interact with your customers. If you don’t want to spend large amounts of money on a web-designer or IT-specialist you can make use of blogging platforms. Word Press is an amazingly simple tool. You can get the free Word Press hosted version or a self-hosted version which is more professional but still affordable and an investment that will, most definitely, pay off.
Get your company listed – for free
Go local. Make your company known to your local customer base. There are many local business directories that allow you to list your company at absolutely no cost, whatsoever. Google inspired maps will then ensure that your customers find the way to your door.
LinkedIn, Facebook, Google+, Twitter…being active on social media might sound like a nerdy hobby, however, as a company you can make the very best use of it in terms of self-promotion. . Make sure people get to know, share and like your content and you will soon realise that social media is in fact an incredibly powerful and effective marketing tool. Getting people to share and like your content will soon attract new customers, as people, naturally, have more trust in friends’ opinions than on product/service reviews from people they don’t know… For example, let’s just say that your company sells hair conditioner, you can keep telling people how great your products are, and they may, or may not believe you. However, if their friends’ recommend your amazing conditioner they WILL believe it. The magic phrase: ‘Word of Mouth, captures the age old recognition that the best way to advertise your products is, in fact, not to advertise them at all (or, rather to let others do the advertising for you). Nevertheless, you should bear in mind that as powerful a strategy as word-of-mouth is, you should never try to fool people. Don’t spam, people will notice, and your business could be damaged irreparably. In essence, it’s very simple, all you have to do is offer good quality and people will find and like your company, on and off of Facebook!
It may sound a bit ‘old school’, but business cards are essential, as are logos. These are the tiny details that are easily overlooked, so be extra vigilant, make sure you add your logo wherever you can. A logo is the most simple and yet the most effective way of establishing your brand.