When you have any sort of business there is one thing you must do to survive and thrive: advertise. That’s how you get the word out about your products and services to people who want to buy them. Every business owner needs to set their products or services in front of their potential customers. However, most of the traditional ways cost money and not everyone can buy TV Ads when they are just starting up the business. The great news is you don’t have to spend a bunch of money on paid advertising. In fact, there are plenty of ways to you can take advantage of free online advertising. These free online advertising methods can actually be quite effective.
- Embrace social media – Social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Instagram have become major ways for companies large and small to reach prospects and customers. With social media a company or brand can facilitate the process of having a prospect know, like, and trust them enough to buy. The great thing is that you can do it for free.
- Start a blog – Another great way to engage in free online advertising is to start a blog. You can include text content, photos, and videos about important topics in your niche. The important thing with a blog is to post regularly, several times a week because abandoned blog is worth nothing.
- Put up multimedia on YouTube and Flickr – YouTube provides a free way to distribute creative promotional videos, but in order to succeed you must put up content that people want to view and are appropriate to your business. A Flickr profile can also help by giving you one place to compile all the photos for your business, and allows you to link back to your website.
- SEO your company website – Search engine optimization cannot be underestimated in the world of constant Googling. Pick up a book or head over to an online how-to-guide on SEO and make sure your site is primed for performance on search engines.
- Press releases – Each time your business do something interesting, don’t hesitate to shoot off a press release. They’re a powerful media tool to use to help generate publicity, and having free distribution of them is a bonus.
- Connect to a relevant online community and contribute – Every niche has communities online that you can get involved in. Actively contribute and build a rapport with the community, while keeping your business out of it.
Promote your business on Facebook
Nearly all consumers use the Web to search for local businesses – and most of them are on Facebook. The website is the biggest social networking platform in the world by far, with more than a billion active users. A good Facebook presence can help you engage your fans and grow your business. Marketing on Facebook helps you find new customers and build lasting relationships with them. Here are some tips for using the world’s largest social media channel to grow your business.
- Use the net you already have – Send out an email to your contact list, announcing your latest page and inviting people to Like your business on Facebook. You should also add social media buttons to your email footer, so your email subscribers are continually reminded of your active social channels.
- Add a Follow Button on your website – Make it easy for your website visitors to Like your page by adding a Follow Button to your website or blog. A Facebook Follow Button is a widget you can add to your website that links people from your website to your Facebook Page.
- Create a Facebook Ad – Running a Facebook Ad is an easy way to get your page in front of a new relevant audience. Using Facebook’s targeting features you can create an ad that reaches people with certain characteristics like age and location.
- Share helpful content – Present to people a reason to Like your page by sharing useful posts and driving action. Facebook is a highly visual channel, so share images and videos when you can.
- Promote your page offline too – Promote your Facebook Page on all of your print marketing materials including business cards, menus, flyers, signs, t-shirts — anywhere it can be visible.
Advertising with Google
Google has always been one of the most powerful ways to market your brand. But what is the correct method to advertise on Google and why should you market on this platform in the first place? One of the easiest and most successful ways to advertise to a big audience is Google Adwords. It’s also the main advertising platform on the planet because you are wielding the power of the leading search engine. Smart small business owners flock to Google AdWords for three main reasons. First, the platform offers an unbeatable opportunity to customize your advertising messages to incredibly specific audiences. Next, you get to connect with your specified audience at the exact moment that they are searching for a product or service like yours. And finally, because AdWords is designed around a cost-per-click model, you can preset your desired budget and only pay when a prospect actually clicks through to visit your website. Advertising on Google with AdWords requires an AdWords account, which is free and can be signed up for at the official Google AdWords page. Once you’ve opened your account, it’s time to figure out how to use AdWords to grow your business!
The following is a ten-step process for advertising on Google:
- Establish your account goals
- Determine your audience
- Conduct keyword research
- Set budgets and bids
- Build your optimal account structure
- Write high-performing ads
- Create effective landing pages
- Implement conversion tracking
- Grow your re-marketing lists
- Make optimization a habit