Create a Buzz about your Business

So you want to market your business, but you don’t have the dough to buy an ad during the Superbowl or even in the Super Saver. Rest assured, there are lots of ways to garner attention for your business that don’t include giant billboards, television promos or an eight-page spread in Cosmo, but you might have to get creative.

Help Someone Out, and It Will Come Back Ten Fold

Lending a helping hand not only gives you good Karma points, it can be a great way to advertise your business. If there is a charitable event taking place in your area, contact the events coordinator and offer to lend your business’ services or goods for a good cause.

For example, say you own a small design firm, offer to design fliers, banners, and other types of signage for the event. If you don’t own a business that lends itself to servicing an event, offer to lend a hand in any way you can. Then, not only will the patrons of the event get to see the kind of work you are capable of, all of the advertising that goes into promoting the event will list your company as one of the sponsors. That means, anytime and anywhere the event is being promoted, be it in the local paper, on a website, on television or the radio, your name will get out into the public eye right along with the event.

For even more media coverage, you can try hosting your own charitable event. Be sure to send out a press release notifying all of your local media outlets about who you are, why your are sponsoring the event, who the proceeds will benefit, and why it will be an interesting event to attend as well as all other pertinent information such as, times, dates and admission fees. Don’t forget, philanthropy can be a great tax write-off for your business as well. Speak to your CPA or dig up some information on charitable contributions and business, and see just how much you can save by giving.

Give It Away

Nothing puts a bigger smile on someone’s face than the sweet smell of free stuff, and your potential clients will be more than happy to jot down their valuable contact information if it means they might get something for nothing. Raffling off a prize is a great marketing strategy, and you have probably seen it done many times. You may have even signed up for the chance to win a free week at the local gym yourself or some other prize.

Decide on something you would like to offer, such as a discount on a service or product from your business, and set up raffle boxes in businesses that don’t compete with you around your area. Try setting up your raffle in the businesses of people you know, places you frequent or places you do business with yourself. Have contestants fill out a piece of paper with their contact information (name, phone number, email address, mailing address) and hold a drawing as often as you like. You may want to offer everyone who submits their contact information a discount of some sort. The valuable thing for you is getting a great contact list of people who are interested in your business. You can then use it to mail out fliers, coupons, newsletter and emails. These are effective, inexpensive methods of getting your message out and building your business.

Get the Message Out

An important component to effectively marketing your business is to get your message out often. While the identity of your business should remain consistent, informing your customers about new promotions, events, products and services is a great way to keep people interested and to keep your business on the forefront of your customers’ minds.

One simple way to do this is to compose a monthly newsletter and send it out via mail or email to all of your contacts. The goal is for you to create a rapport with your contacts, so be sure to include information that will be fun and interesting for your target to read. Avoid using the letter as a platform to boast about your company’s achievements, and instead focus on the benefits your company can offer clients. For instance, if your newsletter is promoting dentistry, you may want to include an article about the health benefits of good dental hygiene, trivia questions about healthy mouth care, an article about a new technology that your office is now using and a discount on teeth cleaning.

The longer your contacts spend with your marketing materials, the better chance they will become your customers, so it is in your best interest to give them plenty of engaging material. Similarly, regularly updating your website with current information, news articles or blog entries also helps to keep your customers’ interest in your business piqued.

Generating buzz about your company is a pivotal part of your success, and oftentimes, a business is only as good as its marketing campaign, even if the product or service is phenomenal. Regardless of whether you have a large advertising budget, with some creative marketing techniques and a little ingenuity, you can promote your business to thousands of potential clients without breaking the bank. The right mix of great products and creative marketing can turn today’s newsletter or fundraiser into tomorrow’s Super Bowl spot.

Feel free to comment. What are some creative marketing ideas that you have tried, and did they work? How have you generated buzz about your business?

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