Marketing is the lifeblood of any small company. The initial success of your company, or its growth, will depend upon whether you can attract enough customers.
Here are some marketing ideas that could help your company to grow.
Google sponsored links (Adwords)
Google Adwords is probably one of the most effective marketing ideas that we have come across. When you type a search word into Google you may well have seen some small adverts on the right-hand side. These are small classified adverts that only appear when the right keyword is typed into Google.
What we have particularly liked about Google links is that they are pay per click and you can specify how much you want to spend per click and how much you want to spend per day. With our presentation business, we found that we were getting enquiries in a few days and we landed two of our biggest customers this way. On average – over the first year – we reckon that for every £1 we spent on advertising we got a lot more back in extra revenues – and we are still seeing the benefit of that now.
If you do use Google Adwords make sure that you change the maximum cost per click from their recommendations. They asked for £1.00 per click (to get you top position) but we found we could get away with between 12p and 25p.
This probably the cheapest form of marketing that we have come across, but has become a bit of a dirty word. It is now much more heavily regulated due to regulations in force from 1 December 2003. Basically this means that you have to obtain prior permission from people before you can email them. That is not as difficult as it sounds.
– Ask your customers if they would like to be added to your newsletter. They will often agree and ask them to fill in a card or send them an email asking them to confirm. This way you will have proof that they have given their permission. If you are running a shop ask them to fill in a card at the checkout desk.
– Add a mailing list box to your website. This is a simple way of catching email addresses. There are a number of form providers. We have in the past used free software provided by BizMailForms. This is rather fiddly to set up and does require a technical background – but it is free.
Give some information away
It may sound odd, but giving some information away is very important to gaining credibility. We have stopped counting the number of people who have asked us how we will make money from our websites.
What we have found since we have started sharing our knowledge is that we have not had to spend any money on advertising our businesses. We put up articles when we have some spare time and we have many thousands of people every month looking at our website.
If you are sending out a newsletter put some free information in it – for example, if you are running a cook shop – include some of your favourite recipes. If you run a website put up some free hints and tips.
Print your company name on your car or van
This may not be as expensive as you think. A friend of mine is a sports coach. He managed to get his car printed with his company details for around £130. Every time he drives down the motorway he has hundreds of people reading about his company.
Free Google advertising
The best way to get on to Google is to get into the index on the left-hand side. You can do this by submitting your web address into Google. You start by entering your web address into Google add url – this typically takes around 6 weeks to become active. Your rating will be improved if you can find other sites who will link back to you.
When you have a link back to you on another site – make sure you enter that page into Google.
We hope that these marketing ideas were of some assistance. If you have any other ideas, please leave them in the box below.
You forget to mention Facebook. Their ad platform is now better than AdWords.