So, you have started your business, now comes one of the most difficult steps, i.e., to promote it. Without marketing and promotion, how would anyone find out about your business?
Even if you are making a world-class product or providing the best service in your industry you cannot grow without taking your business in front of the world.
Promoting your business is sometimes quite difficult when you have just started out and you don’t have a huge budget. Sometimes you have to fight against big companies with huge budgets to get people’s attention.
So, without further wasting time let’s dive in ways to promote your business in modern society.
- Get A Website For Your Business:
Getting a website for your business is one of the most important steps in these modern times. Everyone is hooked to their devices whether it is mobile, tablets, computer screen or smart TVs.
Product search has completely changed over the decade. Nowadays people first search and find out more about a product on their devices before trying it.
So, it is imperative that you have a website for your business. You should hire professional designers if you want to make an impression.
- Build a microsite for your business:
You can build a microsite which is related to the specific product or service that you’re offering.
Things to keep in mind before building a microsite are:
- It should be around 1-5 pages
- It should be an extension of your main Website
There is a debate going around the SEO (Search Engine Optimization) and Digital Marketers whether microsites are good for your business.
Most of them are suggesting against the use of microsites.
So, I would recommend you to take the advice of your Digital Marketer before using this option.
- Use Google AdWords for promotion
With people going to Google to search for everything, you can use it’s paid service to promote your website.
It is a fast method by which you can get to the SERP(Search Engine Results Page) result when anyone is trying to search for the keywords that you are bidding for.
You should consult a good Digital Marketer to use this process. If you are not aware of it’s working then you should do some research and reading to get some idea.
Google AdWords gives you different types of options to promote your business:
In the text ads, your business will be shown to Google searchers whenever anyone types a word which you are promoting.
Your business will be above the organic search results. Google uses many factors to show the results so, you should always hire a good professional Digital Marketer for your business promotion.
The display ads are shown on other websites and social media platforms in the form of banner ads, images, audio, and video formats.
It is a fast method to reach your potential product buyers.
- Smart Programmatic Advertising:
This is one of the most innovative marketing methods which is catching up fast. This process works on the location of the user.
If a person is near your business location then they would be shown your business ads on their smart device.
This method of advertising works in real time.
SEO(Search Engine Optimization) is a method of increasing your website’s rank in search engine results.
You want to be on top of the search result for your targeted keywords.
This is a slightly slow process when compared to Google AdWords or any other type of paid advertisement.
But, studies have shown that in the long run, it gives you richer results as most people believe in organic results as compared to the paid results.
If your budget permits then you can hire a Digital Agency or a freelance expert.
- Enlist your business on Google Maps:
You should use the free service by Google to enlist your business on Google Maps.
It is a good way to promote your business locally. Whenever anyone types in a query related to your business in the Google Maps they would be shown the location of your business.
This method also works on the location of the user.
You can also enlist your business in Bing Maps.
- Email Marketing:
It is one of the oldest methods of digital marketing. In this process, emails are sent to potential customers explaining them benefits of your product and services.
In today’s modern world when chatbots, artificial intelligence and new methods of marketing are coming up regularly people think that email marketing is dead.
But, according to a new study of 2019 email marketing is among the top marketing method to reach your potential customers.
It is a method which provides the most return on investments. So, get a good writer explaining about your product or business in powerful words and start sending out emails.
Please check out the rules for sending out unsolicited emails in your country. Some countries have made it illegal to send these unsolicited emails.
- Online Directories:
The world is moving towards digital or I should say that most have already moved towards digital platforms.
Users search for the business/ product on search engines or online directories. So, you should enlist your business on online directories.
There are many online directories which exist. You should get enlisted on them according to your niche.
Some of them are free while others are paid.
- Ebooks and White Papers:
White Papers are a description which is written by experts explaining your product or business.
It is written with the intent to fully explain about your business to the user. It helps the user to understand your product and make a decision (hopefully a positive one).
Ebooks are books which are written in digital format. It can be read on smart devices and computers.
Hire some good experts to write about your product and business. It will pay you rich dividends.
Blogging is a method to increase the awareness about your product, business and website traffic.
It is all in one method to get your website and business across your customers.
The language can be formal or informal depending upon your customers.
Anyone can write a blog if you can type on a keyword. But, if you want, you can take the help of professionals.
Blogging can be used everywhere from brand awareness to final buying depending upon the buyer’s cycle.
- Facebook Page
In this age of social media, you should always build a Facebook page for your business.
It is quite important for your brand building and product awareness. It helps to put your business on the map.
The Facebook business page helps you to direct traffic to your website. With 2.27 billion monthly users this platform is a must for your business.
You can also run paid ads to reach your buyers.
This is the largest social media platform for professionals. If you want to reach your potential customers then this a must.
Besides increasing traffic to your website it will help you to establish your business and brand image.
Here, you can share all the information about your products and business.
You can also run paid ads on LinkedIn to reach your potential buyers.
- Twitter and other social media platform:
You can do some testing on Twitter and other popular social media platforms.
You can conduct an experiment to find out which platform has got the most active users for your product.
With so many social media platform to choose from you should concentrate all your efforts on the platform which has the most users for your business niche.
- Contribute to forums and answer questions on groups:
You can also contribute to social media forums and contribute to a discussion.
In addition, you can also answer questions on other platforms.
It will help you to build your brand image and reach to the masses. By solving problems by answering questions you’re growing your image in buyer’s mind.
One On One Advertising
This is one of the old forms of advertising. It has survived the test of time.
In this method, you interact directly with your potential customers.
One On One advertising is a process in which you give
A personal touch:
You can always give a personal touch in these times where a personal touch is becoming more and more endangered.
You can also customize your offer according to your customer needs.
- Cold Calling:
It is the oldest method in which you communicate with the customer without any prior communication with them.
In these times where a personal touch is a losing art this method provides benefits which other digital methods can’t provide.
You can use this method along with the other methods to get the best ROIs.
It is one of the most budget-friendly methods as you don’t need prior support or structure.
The best thing about this method is that it is the fastest method to gain customers. If you are not able to sell any product you will definitely make some connections.
One thing to always keep in mind is that most people get irritated by this method. So, you should use your judgment.
It is also one of the old methods of marketing through the use of a telephone. You can generate leads, gain customers, conduct a survey about the market and product.
It is an especially useful method for small businesses because it is economical than other methods. It is also important if you’re located in some hard to reach the place.
It can be used as a stand-alone method or it can be combined with all your marketing methods.
- Join Business Groups:
The best way to increase your business name is to join some business group in your niche industry.
This is especially important if you’re doing business locally. It will help to interact with like-minded people.
You will even get new ideas about market, business and other important aspects of the business.
On a small fee, you can join any business group and reap its benefits.
It is one of the indirect methods of marketing in which you build relationships with the public and tell them about your product.
By this method, you’re pulling customers towards your product instead of pushing your product to them.
Building good public relation will certainly increase your brand value and image in the public mind.
- Distribute Press Releases:
Writing a killer press release and sending it to the press can help your business get instant recognition.
A journalist is always looking for opportunities to write about new businesses.
The press releases give an instant boost to your business and brand. It should be a fundamental part of your marketing campaign.
- Contact the reporters directly:
You can even contact reporters directly by sending them invitations. This is a slightly slow process as you have to build relations to reporters months in advance.
You should invite them to every occasion which is important to your business like a product launch or some fundraising party. Always send them invitations even if they can’t come.
Outdoor Marketing Methods:
These methods are useful for getting your message across the customer when they are outside their homes.
These are the oldest and most widely used method of advertising. There are also a number of methods, some old some new which are employed.
Depending upon the method employed it can be budget friendly as well as quite expensive.
Installing billboards is one of the traditional methods of outdoor advertising.
We all have seen and know about it. We can see them on highways, bridges, bus stops, railway stations and other vantage points.
But, getting a spot on a good strategic point can be quite expensive.
If you are a small business then there are other forms of billboard advertisements which can be used.
- Bicycle billboards:
In this new type of billboard advertising method, a bicycle is used to tow the billboard across the town.
This process is quite economical as well as eco-friendly. In short, it gets the job done.
- Digital Billboards:
This new form of a billboard is slowly replacing the old type of billboards. The installation cost is slightly higher than the traditional billboards but, in the long run, it is more cost effective.
You can also use video ads to run on the digital billboards which gets the message across faster than the traditional ones.
- Bus Shelter Ads
Bus Shelter ad is a very fast and cost-effective method of getting your message across to the masses.
It is an especially effective method in developing countries like India where a huge number of people travel via buses.
- On Buses
This one is also a cost-effective way of advertisement. It is especially useful in big cities with lots of buses plying.
The buses act like moving billboards.
- On Metro trains:
The ads on the side of metro trains are getting popular day by day. They provide an instant impact as they offer eye-level visibility and are easy to read.
They come in various shape and sizes from side panels to the fully wrapped ads.
- On Trucks:
Trucks offer twin benefits of transporting goods while it can be also used for advertisement at the same time.
Since most trucks cover long distances on one go, your ads can be seen by lots of people.
- Car Signage/other small vehicles:
You can use your creativity to show your ads on cars. You can hire a creative agency to make some attractive graphics.
You can also show your ads on other small vehicles.
- Building Signage
The advertisement outside buildings is also a very cost-effective and powerful way to get your message across.
If you can get to show your ads on some buildings with a nice vantage point then your business can certainly get an instant boost.
- Posters across the city
This one is one of the oldest forms of advertisement method. It is also quite cost-effective and gives you a good return on the advertisement.
It is especially useful for small businesses with a small budget.
- Standing display in the malls
Shopping malls attract a huge number of visitors daily and especially during the holidays.
It is an instant way to make your product visible.
- Hot Air Balloons
This is one of the innovative ways to promote your business or product to the masses.
Your ad can be customized according to your need. It is highly visual and cost-effective.
It can be also used at the product launch and public gatherings.
- Floating Clouds
The floating clouds are made up of gas, soap, bubbles, water which is made to look like your company’s logo and resemble your product.
The floating clouds capture instant attention and make your product recognizable.
It is also cost-effective and environmentally friendly.
It can be used during product launches and other public gatherings to promote your product.
- 3D Holographic Displays:
The 3D Holographic display is one of the most advanced ways to attract the crowd’s attention.
It can be used to entice, enchant and engage the audience.
It is suitable for small businesses which are looking to get instant recognition.
- Text messages:
Text message advertisement can be used to develop brand awareness, product promotion, building relationship with customers, informing about new offers.
In this age of high engagement with the device (smartphones), it is one of the most reliable and cost-effective ways to promote your business.
A new data shows that only 21% of the Tweets, 21% of the emails, 12% of the Facebook posts are read. The same study shows that 90% of the text messages are read within 3-minutes of the sending.
It is quite simple to use and you don’t need any technical resource.
So, don’t forget to use text messages to promote your product.
Alternative Advertising Methods:
These are non-traditional methods of advertising which can be used to send your message across.
Here, you have got a unique opportunity to get the leverage because most of the business owners do not prefer to use them or we can say that they are more inclined towards traditional methods of advertising.
You should do some research and think before trying to use these methods.
- PR Stunts
A carefully designed and implemented PR stunt can give your business instant fame. PR Stunts can be organized professionally or even by amateurs.
If you are short of money then you can hire some lesser known good agency. If you have got some creative talent then you can also organize and coordinate these PR stunts yourself.
This is one of the oldest and best forms of advertising which is most necessary for the growth of any type of business.
It is somewhat difficult to control but if you’re providing a good service then it will definitely help your business.
If you can manage properly and can hire a good agency then certainly this marketing strategy will help you.
There are two types of Word-of-the-mouth movement:
Direct: In this type of marketing, the whole campaign is fully controlled by the agency and the manager.
Indirect: It is the other type of marketing in which the campaign is slightly controlled by the agency and the manager. The agency spreads the word in the market carefully and then wait for the word to spread in the market.
- Viral content e.g. video, images etc.
In this type of marketing strategy some video, images, contents are made viral using the existing social media channels.
Some contents become viral itself while others are made viral using content that is worth spreading.
But, it is difficult to predict which content will go viral.
The first step is to always make good creative content.
You can use many strategies to help to spread the content one of it is taking help of the social influencers.
- Legal Graffiti:
Legal Graffiti is one way in which you can create such designs which can engage as well as entertain young people.
Legal Graffiti presents your brand and product in a slightly different light.
It also gives you the opportunity to share your content on social media channels to get more coverage.
- Good return on investments
- Increasing brand awareness as well as brand building
- Increasing your sales
But, you should remember to check if the graffiti will suit your business and product.
- Flyers on the windshields:
This method of advertising has been in use from a very long time and it is quite effective. You must have seen this type of advertising. You just parked your car in some shopping mall and when you return, it had a flyer on the windshield.
It is one of annoying yet effective method. So, use your discretion.
- Video projection on the side of the building:
This is also a guerrilla marketing technique in which your ads are projected on building or buildings at some busy place with the help of a projector.
It is one of the most effective technique to make your product viral.
If you have the budget then it is definitely a technique which you should use.
- Night time laser show:
Laser shows are a great way to attract the attention of the masses. We don’t want to get into the technicality of the things. But, if your marketing budget permits, then you should definitely try this option.
Laser shows are a fantastic method to get your message across if done properly.
This one is a tried and tested method of building your brand awareness as well as building goodwill in the community.
There are many ways through which you can do it.
- Sponsoring an NGO work:
This one help to build goodwill in the community if you can sponsor some NGO work like cleaning the beaches, planting trees, etc.
- Sponsoring a sports team:
You can always sponsor a local sports team, college team or even a school team.
You can also distribute free t-shirts in the event.
- Distribute printed objects:
Print out your brand name on pens, diaries, clocks, calendars, etc. and distribute among the public and your customers.
- Set up stands in shopping malls:
If you have a product which can be demonstrated publically then you can set up stands in shopping malls and some busy places where its use can be shown to the public.
It is one of the cost-effective methods to get your message about your brand across the public.
- Business Seminars:
Business seminars are a fast way to build business relationships as well as getting your message across to other business people.
You can get exposure to people from media, press, influencers and other business. When you attend these seminars you will also gain insights into the current trends.
It will also help in generating new ideas about increasing sales.
- Trade shows and Expos:
Trade shows and expos are one of the traditional and fast ways to market your business and product. It provides good exposure and if done in the right way will certainly boost your business.
The crowd gathered at these shows are mostly from your niche industry which is an added benefit.
They provide an incredible opportunity for face-to-face interaction and we all know it nothing gives your product more exposure than the old tried and tested face-to-face interaction.
- Newspaper and Magazines Advertisement:
Over the last few years, new age gurus and marketers are saying that the newspaper ads are a huge waste of time and money, but statistics and other inside reports are saying otherwise.
The top newspapers have a wider audience base so, you can get instant exposure.
Nowadays, you can also run your ads on the digital version of the newspaper. The digital version also provides you a flexible option to change your ads if they are not working.
You are short of budget then you can always choose a local newspaper.
Magazines whether printed or digital can also be used to market your product.
Radio advertising is also one of the traditional and effective ways to spread the word about your business.
The main advantage of using radio advertisement is the ability to choose the time when you want your ads to run.
It is not suitable for you if your product requires some kind of demonstration to show its use.
- TV Ads:
This form is certainly the most effective type of medium to get exposure. It is quite expensive when compared with other types of marketing methods. But, if you have the marketing budget then you should definitely go for it.
Note: All product names, images, trademarks and registered trademarks are property of their respective owners. All company, product and service names used in this answer are for identification purposes only.