Small Business Brief


Any Publicity Is Good Publicity: 5 Free Advertising Ideas for Small Businesses with No Budget

When it comes to marketing, there is no industry standard. Research has shown that companies across America spend anything between 1-30% of their budget on marketing campaigns.

But what about those that have no budget at all? Especially if you’re a start-up, then finding the spare change to run a marketing campaign can seem like an impossible luxury.

Fortunately, there are countless ways to effectively engage your target audience without spending a penny. Here are five free advertising ideas that always work.  

Before You Start: Put Together a Content Strategy 

Small business marketing is often always done on a shoestring. If you’re looking to advertise without spending money, a written strategy is key.

With B2B content marketing especially, the importance of writing up how and why you want to engage your audience is a critical first step.

Only after this will you be able to give your promotional ideas a sense of momentum.

Free Advertising Ideas: Write Some Kick-Ass Content 

This is actually one of the most effective marketing strategies full-stop. Written content for your website or blog is a sure-fire way to drive up traffic that needn’t cost any money.

As long as you or someone in your team is a talented writer, then you can drum up engagement with things list how-to guides, top 10 lists, and blog posts. 

Reward Social Media Engagement 

When it comes to cheap marketing materials, it doesn’t get much better than social media. Getting engagement from users is a hugely effective way to boost your online rankings and cultivate a brand following.

Reward that engagement by offering discounts, giveaways, and early-access to whoever likes, shares, and follows you. Consider some brand giveaway ideas to really sweeten the deal. 

Encourage Loyalty 

They say loyalty costs nothing and this is doubly true when it comes to marketing. One of the most effective promotional ideas comes in the form of membership schemes.

Create a community and make your loyal customers feel special. You can do this for free simply by creating things such as newsletters, access codes, and social media groups.

If your customers feel like they are a part of something, they’ll choose you over the competition every time. 

Utilize Your Reviews 

Your reviews are your greatest untapped asset. Make sure you register your business on Google My Business, Bing Places, Facebook, and Apple Maps.

Encourage customers to leave reviews and make sure to relentlessly promote the most positive ones you receive.

If you’re looking for marketing material ideas that truly don’t cost anything, your online reviews are waiting to be used. 

Partner Up 

Collaboration is the key to survival. Rather than viewing all of your neighbors as competitors, see if there are opportunities for you to merge resources and conduct a joint marketing campaign.

Perhaps you can encourage other businesses to give referrals, as part of a mutual agreement.

Simple, small arrangements such as these cost nothing and are the lifeblood of countless small businesses across the world.

Learn More 

Free advertising ideas are a great way to get started, but you’ll need more than that to succeed. To learn how to market your business intelligently and effectively, make sure to follow our marketing section today.