Pro Tips

Marketing Strategies That Work With Any Budget

by Tiffany Markarian

Marketing tips for any budget can be successful provided you use the right strategies. Having unlimited marketing dollars does not guarantee clients will engage. Successful marketing requires you to know your ideal client and what they truly want. You need to know the problems they want to solve, how they define value and how they want to receive information. This is the key to marketing, no matter what size budget you have.

With a little extra thought and creativity, you can get your name out there without a lot of expense. Below are 10 inexpensive, proven marketing tips for any budget that will get you noticed.

1. Speak from Your Client’s Point of View

Many businesses spend hours carefully crafting their brand and messaging. The problem is they tend to write from their point of view, not the client’s. Your messaging needs to communicate what sets you apart in ways your clients will understand. For example, listing out all your products or services, or your years of experience, is not going to entice prospects to engage with you.

You need to answer their primary question, which is, “How is that going to benefit me?” If you speak from the client’s point of view, you will have a higher likelihood of people engaging with you.

2. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)

Putting content out there is one thing; getting noticed is another. If you take the time to develop content, build a brand, blog or website, you need to maximize SEO. SEO stands for search engine optimization. It is the process of improving a website or blog in ways that help it rank in search results when people search for specific words and phrases. SEO helps drive traffic to your content and can move you ahead of the competition. SEO gives you the potential to increase leads and optimize your results. This is one of the most important marketing tips for any budget.

3. Networking (Virtual or In-Person)

Another marketing tip for any budget is networking. Networking is getting involved in community, cultural or industry events where like-minded people meet to make valuable connections. What this means to you is meeting people who share your beliefs, interacting with people who could become clients over time and increasing your visibility.

To succeed in networking, it starts with identifying viable groups and organizations that connect regularly and align with your niche markets. From there, the most important skill is focusing on the people you meet, not selling yourself. You need to spend time learning about the members and fostering long-term relationships, not immediate sales. Product or service pushing will do just that – push people away.

Networking helps you learn about the needs of your prospective clients. You are able to have a conversation about their industry, special interests and their overall lives. If you start with a mindset of building relationships and being curious about others, people will be curious about you and your services.

4. Share an Educational Article or Workshop

It might sound overwhelming, but sharing your expertise through educational articles or workshops positions you as an authority in your field. You may not be a creative writer or public speaker, but if you can record yourself explaining a particular service and how it solves a problem, you will have the framework for an article or workshop.

Organizations, publications and blogs are often looking for quality, non-sales oriented content. You may be able to share your expertise on their platforms in several ways, such as:

  • Submit a compliance-approved article as a guest post on someone’s blog or publication, linking back to your website or social media page (Note: make sure it is a quality blog that complements your brand).
  • Comment on a relevant topic on social media, in a consultative way, not a product sale or push.
  • Join Twitter Chats, LinkedIn, or Facebook Groups for your niche markets to share ideas.
  • Donate your services or expertise for a non-profit cause.
  • Serve as a guest speaker for a virtual or in-person workshop designed for your niche market.

Your goal is to become a trusted resource for people who want objective, unbiased advice or service. Sharing your knowledge through organizations and networks positions your value inside the network. You can then re-share the content on your social media when it is published, increasing your visibility!

5. Commit to a Social Media Platform

It’s one thing to be on social media, it’s another to truly engage on a social media platform. You don’t need to be on every platform, but you should determine where your prospects are most engaged on social media.

Once you commit to a platform, you want to regularly post content to keep an active following. Reply to every comment someone posts on your page and engage other influencers on the platform. Commit to daily interaction on at least one platform so you gain deep traction. You don’t want to go weeks or months at a time without having a presence.

6. Execute a Truly Personalized Client Experience

When you are onboarding and serving your clients, ask them about their preferences and act on them:

  • Do they prefer communication by telephone, email, Zoom, or text?
  • How frequently would they like these communications to occur?
  • How technology savvy are they?
  • What topics are of most interest to them?

Capturing these preferences and acting on them can help better customize your client experience. The more comfortable your clients feel, the more willing they will be to refer and promote your services to others.

7. Appreciate Your Clients in Unique Ways

Client appreciation does not have to be an expensive or in-person event. It is about knowing what is important to your clients (i.e., hobbies, accomplishments and special interests). It is another example of great marketing tips for any budget that will always pay relational dividends.

You want to keep an ear open to the little tidbits clients tell you about themselves and capture them in your client database. In doing so, you can truly build a personalized client cultivation plan. You will deepen your client relationships and get to know and serve them on a deeper level.

Client appreciation opportunities can include:

  • Is your client a veteran? (Send them a card on Veteran’s Day or host a virtual event)
  • Do they have pets? (Send their pet a box of dog or cat treats)
  • What are their special interests? (You could send them articles on these topics)
  • Are they a widow or widower? (Send them a card on Valentine’s Day to let them know they are not alone)
  • Are they a teacher or nurse? (Send them an appreciation card in May for National Nurse or National Teacher Day)

8. Build Relationships with Centers of Influence

Collaborating with Centers of Influence (COIs) can allow you to work with professionals who bring complementary services to your niche markets. It is an opportunity to mutually refer clients and share marketing opportunities.

As you schedule meetings with potential COIs, you need to provide each COI with a clear understanding of what makes you distinct and vice-versa. This does not mean a pitch about your services. It is about sharing the outcomes and benefits you provide to clients and how you each respectively market yourselves.

You want to make sure you do the necessary due diligence so that you are collaborating with someone who is ethical, trustworthy and enhances your position in the marketplace.

9. Philanthropy (Genuine Care and Interest)

Getting involved with causes you and your clients care about showcases your character. It gets you noticed. Prospective clients are more inclined to work with trusted experts who genuinely care about something larger than themselves. Select a cause that personally means something to you.

It is not about simple sponsorships. It is about being authentic and passionate about a cause that you can support with other like-minded individuals. The natural camaraderie and goodwill that philanthropy creates can help shape the values of your business.

10. Personal and Professional Development

There’s an old saying, “energy flows where your attention goes.” When you focus on personal growth and learn new skills your confidence increases. It eases anxiety and helps you get over marketing hurdles. This includes not only personal growth, but professional development as well.

Your energy directly affects your morale, your business and results. Focusing on personal and professional development is a catalyst for marketing success and business opportunities. When you attain a designation or certificate that is a promotional opportunity with your clients and in your local marketplace.

These 10 inexpensive marketing tips for any budget will help advance your marketing momentum and showcase the value that separates you and your business in the marketplace.

 

Tiffany Markarian has been helping businesses advance their marketing momentum since 1995. She is a frequent author for industry journals and a keynote speaker for professional associations, firms and broker/dealers. She can be reached at tiffany@advantusmarketing.com or Twitter @AdvantusMktg.

Tiffany MarkarianMarketing Strategies That Work With Any Budget

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