There are a lot of ideas on how to jump start your marketing and advertising strategy, and many of them are too costly for new and existing businesses to use. Here are 3 things you can do to help your business without spending all that you have:
1. Media Strategy
The media can be a powerful tool that you can use to promote your business. However, you don't want to spend a lot of money on radio and television advertisements only to get little or no results. The approach you should take when it comes to the media, is establishing yourself as the "go-to" person in your industry. Brand yourself as the expert, and make the media come to you.
This takes time, and is easier said than done, but you can add value to the media, which is always in need of experts to help them provide news and entertainment content to viewers. For example, if you're a self-published author, your marketing and advertising strategy should be to get on talk radio or relevant television programs as an expert on the topic you've written about. Your strategy should not be (in most cases) to buy television and radio spots to sell your book. Local news reporters and talk show hosts will want to hear from you to see if you can fill up airtime.
Whatever business you're in, think of ways to be the authority in your industry and send press releases out to local and Internet-based media. As you grow your business and become more successful, you can send press releases to national television and news media.
2. Online Advertising Strategy
One popular marketing and advertising strategy on the internet is pay-per-click advertising. You pay for certain keywords that you know potential customers are using to search for your product, and pay Google or Yahoo! everytime those keywords get clicked, sending people to your website. This can jump start your advertising plan, but you have to be very careful. You need to establish a daily budget so that you don't pay for more clicks than you can afford. Also, you run the risk of people clicking on your ads that have no desire or ability to purchase your product or service, including some of your competitors who will click on your ads just to get you off Google or Yahoo! for the day. You can avoid this if you carefully craft your ad to ensure that only willing and able buyers click through to your website. Unfortunately, you can't do much about your competitors clicking your ad.
3. Local Launch
A portion of your revenue will come from networking, and one way to find new contacts quickly is to launch your business locally. Find a local event that will draw large crowds that you want to market to and buy a booth space. Use it as an opportunity to network with attendees, vendors and suppliers. Your local Chamber of Commerce may sponsor annual and quarterly events for the very purpose of business to business networking. Other groups and associations may put on annual events that you can participate in to reach consumers. Only attend shows that reach a good portion of your target market. Otherwise, you'll waste money.
Any marketing and advertising strategy will take time to yield the results you want, but these methods can help you boost sales a little faster. It's important to plan to sustain yourself financially for at least 3 to 6 months, while you wait to turn a profit.