Growing a business takes time, dedication and preparation. Every penny must be meticulously managed while working to solidify your bottom line. Marketing is often stigmatized as a costly and time-consuming ingredient in growing a business—especially for those without relevant background or training—but it doesn’t have to be. With a little creativity, collaboration and patience, you can easily establish an effective marketing plan without breaking the bank.
Before embarking on any kind of marketing, communications or promotion plan, one of the most important (and ultimately most profitable!) investments a business can make is in time: time to understand your company, its specific niche in the marketplace and who your customers are. What does your business stand for—and what does it not? What do you provide that simply can’t be found anywhere else? What is the personality, age, gender and location of the typical customer you hope to attract? Crafting a strong identity for your business, and conveying consistent values and messaging to your customers, is how brands are built.
Social media is one of the most powerful resources at any business’ disposal. Aside from paid social advertisements, content created on these platforms is a free way to communicate directly with your customers. Launching a new product? Developing a new service at a low price? Create an engaging post for Facebook or LinkedIn and share with the digital world. Be sure to check out these social media tips, too!
Columbus has long been a city of collaboration between community partners. Partner with other business leaders outside your industry to reach new audiences and expand your visibility. Throw a happy hour with another organization and invite clientele. This gives you an opportunity to connect with a new demographic and tell your brand’s story at the same time.
Create Your Own Content
Investing in someone on your team who can create viable, productive and effective content is a huge gain for your business’ bottom line. Generating content for your blog is a great way to drive traffic to your website and attract the eyes of fellow business leaders. Marketing is about knowing your audience and making a connection—creating content unique to your website is a great connector.
Network at Free Events
Networking is king and, quite possibly, always will be. Attend free or low-cost events in the community that allow you to create and sustain relationships with other leaders. This could lead to future business deals, mentoring relationships and more. Stay on top of local community calendars and register for an event that is pertinent to your business model. The Chamber hosts a multitude of educational programs and networking opportunities each year. Find out more information on our website.
These are just a few of the many ways you and your team can invest in maintaining an inexpensive and relevant marketing plan. One caveat? Make sure to do your research. Marketing must be strategic, as with all other aspects of your business. If thought-out and unique, these cost-effective marketing tactics can make a huge difference for your business.
— The Columbus Chamber of Commerce offers news, information and other resources that are free and available to all businesses at columbus.org. —