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Promote your small business – on a small budget

  • Blog
  • 05 August 2016

Once you’re up and running, you need to get your business noticed. How do you do that if you don’t have a huge budget?

Getting people to notice your business in an over-saturated instant gratification world is hard, but that doesn’t mean you have to give up before you even started.

You don’t need a big budget to get the ball rolling. Let’s take a look out a few tips to get you started.

Promote your small business – on a small budget

Get a website

Your website is open all hours. It’s your online storefront. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to get a website in the go, though. There are plenty of options available to set up a website yourself in just a few clicks.

You don’t have to spend a lot of money to have an online presence almost instantly. Remember that, these days, the first thing people do when they are looking for something is go online. And with local search listings, having a website with your address available could give you an edge in appearing in that coveted top 3 spot in the local listings if your business is in range of the searcher.

Collect email addresses

You might think that email is dead. Everyone’s mailbox is overflowing with stuff we never read, so is it still worth it?

Yes. If you do it right, email marketing still has a place in your toolkit.

Tell people what you offer and add an opt-in option to your website, order confirmations, checkout, Facebook page and any other online area that your business is present in and has control over. Provide an incentive, like a freebie or a special offer, for joining your mailing list.

Stay connected

To avoid overwhelming your subscribers, and yourself with a lot of work, it’s easier to create a drip feed campaign. Offer a challenge specific to your industry, or run a short email how-to series. This way you are not disappearing in a sea of emails, your subscribers know on which day to expect your content.

And because your signed up for the email, it is more likely that you are addressing an immediate problem for them, which means they are more likely to engage with the email. Set up a schedule and stick to it, and don’t overdo it. When it comes to email, less is most definitely more.

Get listed in online directories – for free

Local is big at the moment, and you need to be sure that your business is represented.

Get satisfied customers to leave you a positive review, which will increase your business’ chance of ranking higher in local search result. Better always beats newest.

Comment and interact with reviewers – even negative ones.

Start a business Facebook page

Use your page to list your business details and office hours. Ask your visitors to reply, comment or caption your posts. Believe it or not, people do need to be told what you want them to do. If you just publish posts, people might read it but there may be a very low interaction rate. Add a call to action to some of your posts.

Pictures prompt more interaction, and questions can increase comments and thereby interaction. Keep your posts short, 80 characters or less. And don’t be too salesy. Facebook doesn’t like this and neither will your visitors.

These are just a few tips to help you promote your small business with a small budget.

Have you used any of these tips? Do you have others? Let us know by emailing yourstories@fsb.org.uk


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