Congratulations on recently starting your new business venture. You may have kicked off with a few customers who may include your family or friends. However, for your business to keep making profit, you will need to reach more people with your product or service and convince them to buy what you are selling. This is where Marketing comes in.
According to Barile, “Marketing is the means by which an organization communicates to, connects with, and engages its target audience to convey the value of and ultimately sell its products and services”. There are various mediums used in effectively marketing products and services such as: advertising, public relations, etc. This will cost you money and it is typical to have limited funds at this phase of your business.
How do you manage the challenge of reaching with your target audience with limited funds?
Here are 5 cost-effective ways of marketing your start-up without breaking the bank.
- Word of Mouth
This is one of the cheapest ways to market your product or service. All you need to do is tell every one of your contacts, family, friends, existing customers and new contacts about the amazing product or service you offer. It will be helpful to mention the details of the product and how it can be purchased. Do not be discouraged if you don’t get an instant purchase, as you have succeeded in creating awareness about your brand.
You can also enlist the help of family and friends to sell, sell and sell. More importantly, when you offer great service and have a great product, your customers will most likely tell their contacts of their experience. Encourage your product users to tell others about your product.
2. Social Media Pages
Did you know it is free to set up a Social media page on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc. for your business? This is a great opportunity to showcase pictures and details of your product and service. Also include the price, variants and purchase details on your page and connect with people in your area at no extra cost. This also offers the advantage of engaging your contacts and customers through their comments. Also remember to follow-up with enquiries left in the comment section, as these are potential sales leads.
3. Product Reviews
Product reviews are written feedback from users of your product or service. If you have the contact details of your product users, you can reach out to them after a purchase to get their opinion on your product and the customer service received. Also, if you have a social media page, it is a great idea to encourage your customers to share their experiences using your product or service. Sharing the positive reviews is a great testimonial which will attract more customers. If you receive any negative reviews, do not publish these, but use this feedback to improve the service offered by your business.
4. Product Demonstrations
This is ‘show and tell’ in its simplest form. You have the opportunity to show your target audience what your product is all about and how to use it. If you have a store, you may decide to do the demonstration in front of your store. You may also consider doing the demonstration in an area with high footfall such as: the park, the beach, the market, etc. this could include a taste test or usage of free samples of your product. The feedback is instant and if they like it, they may most likely make a purchase.
5. Free Trials
This is not a suggestion to give away your entire new product to people. You can offer a free trial of your product or service to an influencer and kindly request they post this on their social media page. In this way you get to reach their followers through this good will. Alternatively, you may request their feedback or product review, which should offer good traction when you share this with potential customers.
Do you know of any other cost effective ways of marketing a start-up?