Here’s How to Get Your Business Noticed Without Breaking the Bank
Getting a business off the ground is never easy. In the best of times, the most challenging part of any. Business is customer acquisition followed by customer retention. You can find a warehouse or office building to locate your venture. You can even find someone willing to fund your big idea. The real work is getting people to notice that you are there. If you build it, you haven’t done anything of note. You have to get them to come, stay, and spend money on what you are offering.
The first place to start is both the most obvious and the most overlooked: a press release service. When you learn about other businesses, it is often through a press release. Yet it never crosses the mind of most new business owners that they can also use those services to produce effective press releases of their own. Perhaps they don’t realize how affordable press release services can be. Price is often a barrier to marketing. They might not realize how effective press releases are at getting the word out to targeted markets. Or they might not realize how accessible press release services are. Either way, if you are trying to get your business noticed without breaking the bank, start with press release services. Then do the following:
Conferences and Expos
Local festivals boost exposure to small, local businesses. That has always been the case. People love festivals, expos, and conferences. They are always a lot of fun in a nerdy kind of way. People don’t like to admit how much they enjoy them. But they always go back when given the opportunity. It is like a guilty pleasure about which they need not feel guilty at all.
The people who go to conferences and expos are typically enthusiasts of the category.. Think about a Star Trek convention. The only people there are the people who love the franchise. They are eager to find companies that offer products and services tailored to their interests. Regardless of what the booth price happens to be, it is downright inexpensive compared to the targeted coverage you get. In a small tank, everyone is a big fish. If your town is too small to have conventions, go to the closest big city. That said, you might be surprised at how many events cater to small towns due to lower prices. Don’t be the only one in your town not enjoying the benefits of exposure from conventions and expos.
Give your most loyal enthusiasts a way to help you spread the word by purchasing branded merch. Custom t-shirts are the go-to item because everyone wears t-shirts when they are feeling casual. It only takes a cursory glance to discover that people really don’t care what is printed on the t-shirt. If it happens to be from a company they like, they will wear it with pride.
Of course, there are a lot of other merch opportunities. If you don’t have a face mask with your company logo on it, you are not even trying. A coffee mug is a given and a travel mug is even better. Don’t forget the baseball cap. Will people take these items out in public and serve as billboards for companies? Just take a moment to look around wherever you happen to be. You probably have already spotted several examples. Companies produce this merch on demand. It doesn’t matter if you make money off of merch sales because that isn’t the only point. Merch is a fantastic ways for you to get the word out about what you are doing.
Giving out discounts will cost you a little profit. So what? That little profit you lose is only a fraction of the cost of other types of marketing. Coupons are about marketing and customer acquisition, not immediately profit. Stand outside of a major store and hand out coupons you made on your home printer. Everyone loves a deal and will try new things if the price to try it is viewed as a deal. A generous coupon is one of the most effective and least expensive forms of customer acquisition you can get.
No one is saying that it is going to be easy. But getting the word out can still be effective and relatively inexpensive. After your press release, try presenting at conferences, offering merch, and handing out coupons.