Small businesses often have limited marketing resources. In fact, a 2019 survey from The Manifest showed that a third of small businesses spend less than $10,000 annually on advertising.
As a small business owner or marketer, how can you make your brand rise above the noise, drive traffic to your website and storefront, and build customer loyalty — with a fraction of the money, time, and resources of larger competitors? Check out the following five DIY strategies to help you make the most of your marketing budget and grow your business.
Develop a marketing plan
Small business owners have a lot of flexibility to manage marketing as they see fit. However, every small business needs a well-thought-out marketing plan — one that sets out clear goals, strategies, and budget details so that every dollar spent goes where it will have the most impact.
A robust marketing plan should include your brand’s unique selling proposition and the benefits it offers to customers. It should also establish your pricing and positioning strategy, which will help inform all subsequent marketing efforts.
Furthermore, your plan should outline the distribution methods you’ll use, how you’ll manage transactions with customers, sales strategies, and advertising and promotional strategies. These details will enable you to target your offers, carry them out cost-effectively, and understand how to measure success.
Make the most of low-cost options
To get a good return on your marketing investments, look to inexpensive options that deliver impact. Social media and email are among your best bets, with 7 out of 10 small businesses using Facebook, around half using Instagram and Twitter, and 64% using email marketing.
With these free or largely free options, your small businesses can easily connect and interact directly with customers and prospects. You can keep them updated on your product offerings and promotions, and you can quickly and cost-effectively present live streams, product demos, news alerts, virtual tours, and more.
Of course, you have to produce a lot of engaging content to feature on social media and in email, which means you need user-friendly tools like Adobe Spark. Spark can create visually compelling graphics, web pages, or short videos in just minutes and then post them to your social feed or send them out in email blasts.
Partner with other companies and community organizations
Amplify your marketing messages by joining forces with others. Team up with another company to cross-promote your products and split promotional costs, reach a larger audience, and leverage your partner’s expertise. Sponsor a local nonprofit to benefit from co-advertising, create positive associations with your brand, and strengthen your community.
Marketing starter tools like Adobe Spark make it possible to churn out supporting design assets — like event newsletters, flyers, posters, social posts, and emails — that will get the word out and bring customers your business.
Improve your web experience
Data shows that if you want your business website to convert visitors — i.e., get them to make a purchase, fill out a form, or sign up for a free trial — it needs to be as fast, responsive, and full of valuable content as possible.
A Google study showed that 72% of consumers want websites to be mobile-friendly and that when they encounter non-responsive sites, they’re five times more likely to abandon them. If a page takes more than three seconds on average to load, more than half of visitors will leave it. So definitely invest time optimizing your site for mobile and reducing image sizes to make sure the pages load quickly.
Reduce, reuse, recycle
Save time and money by repurposing content whenever possible. For example, after sending an email discussing the ways customers are benefiting from your products, repurpose the details in the form of an infographic and send it out in an email. Then repurpose the infographic into a social media image or video.
Experience the power of DIY marketing
Now you have the tools to maximize your marketing dollars while keeping your creative content and campaigns flowing. By starting with a solid marketing plan and then making the most of social media, partnerships, your website, and your existing content, you can connect with customers in meaningful ways and get a high return on your marketing investments.