Advertising is a dreaded money and time sink for many businesses, and you’re wondering how exactly you can get ahead of the competition without breaking the bank. Read on to find 10 free ways to do just that!
Advertising your business in 2020 is paramount because there are so many competitors out there for every niche that you need to ensure you stand out as the best so that your customers can find you and use your services over anyone else’s.
But we understand how difficult it can be for businesses to really get their advertising right, especially when you need to do it yourself. There are so many things to know and pay attention to, right?
Well, here’s a list of the top 10 free ways to advertise your business online in 2020:
Search Engine Optimization
The first option is something you might have heard of but are unsure about, but Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is really the best way to get organic web traffic flowing to your website.
Using good SEO practices means that potential customers are going to be searching for what they want on Google and be directed to your site because of the work that you put into the SEO means that Google knows to recommend you for those searches.
SEO can take some time to get right, but once your site is prepared you’ll be ready to go. Typically, it can take up to 6 months to see changes to traffic based on SEO, so don’t be disheartened if you don’t see immediate results!
Social Media Posts for Reaching Out to Customers
The second biggest thing you can do for free advertising in 2020 is make sure that you’re on all of the relevant social media platforms for your business. What this means is picking the sites that your most likely customers are frequenting and making sure your profile there is up to date, has some top notch content, and engages with your audience.
The most common one is obviously Facebook, and they give business owners a lot of control over the pages they can create. This is usually a good way to share posts from your company’s blog, as text is okay for this platform. On the other hand, Instagram is pretty much a purely image-based platform and you should be choosing your highest quality images to go on there.
LinkedIn Content for Reaching Business Partners
On the other side of the social media coin, and hence its own bullet point here, is LinkedIn with its much more professional focus than any other social media site available in 2020. Sharing content on LinkedIn is going to get your business in front of other professionals, other businesses, and may give rise to profitable connections.
Be warned though, just like choosing the right content for Facebook versus Instagram, what you share to LinkedIn isn’t really going to find your customers, as they’re likely hanging out elsewhere on the web.
Guest Blogging for Other Companies
Whilst it might seem a little counter-intuitive, writing some great content for other business’s blogs can be a great way of getting your brand in front of other customers and can create excellent working relationships with other people in your area.
Guest blogging is a way to broaden your audience net, but don’t see it purely as self-promotion. Make sure that you suggest to the host blog that you can give them some content that their audience will be interested in reading!
Another arrow in your quiver is an email list. If you operate in an area that is constantly changing, an email newsletter can be a great way of keeping your audience involved and informed of what’s happening.
A lot of marketers offer a free product in exchange for a customer signing up for their newsletter. This is a useful method, but be careful that your newsletters aren’t so frequent that people get sick of them, and that they aren’t so infrequent that people forget you exist! How many you should send typically depends on your business.
Host an Online Conference / Talk
Especially in the coronavirus world, and as we move into the recovery period in future, there’s not always a lot of opportunity for people to socialize in person. The solution, of course, is to move to an online space. There are many tools that can help you do that, but Zoom is an ever popular one that anyone can use; other social media sites you might already be on have options, so check them all out for what’s best for you.
An online conference is a great opportunity to gather like-minded folks together to discuss the area that you operate in. Conferences can be on any topic, but generally, if you host one you’re going to be able to reach out to the other businesses in your area/field and get some great discussions going.
These online spaces are great networking tools and, as we all know, networking is one of the best ways to get your name and that of your business out there.
Create Awesome Content
In the online world, content is king. If you aren’t drawing people to your business’s website, it’s likely because either your SEO isn’t up to scratch or you aren’t providing anything people want to see!
Audiences love to connect with the companies they invest their hard earned money into. Many companies like to describe the story they took to get to where they are, giving the audience a story to understand, or, you might want to discuss the methods you go to for environmental sustainability in your business! The world’s your oyster when it comes to content.
Use Google My Business
Have you noticed that when you search for companies online, there’s often a listing for that company on the sidebar in the Google search results? That’s often because that business owner has set themselves up with Google My Business. It’s a tool that was released in 2014, and best of all, it’s free!
Once you set up your business on there, make sure you get yourself verified. Customers are more confident in online listings when it’s verified.
Encourage Online Reviews
This one is especially big if you’re in the hospitality, tourism, or service industries, but basically applies to any business. If a business has zero reviews available, it’s often hard for a brand new customer to judge whether they want to spend their money with you.
Pairing your reviews with the Google My Business tip above is even better, because it means that those reviews turn up on the search results page directly when someone searches for your company.
Be Involved, Be Consistent
Most of all, you need to ensure that you are getting involved in your online spaces. This isn’t last because it’s not as important. It’s the most important piece of advice we can give you!
You have to ensure that whatever you do online, you don’t allow your profiles to lay fallow for weeks at a time. If your customers engage with your posts, make sure you thank them and talk to them briefly, back. If you are slowly creating content, then consider a consistent day for releasing that content (especially for newsletters) so that your audience knows when to expect your content.
To get the most out of your online marketing, you can combine free and paid for advertising. If you’re uncertain how to do this yourself, ask the experts at Profit Parrot. We can help you with many of the aspects of advertising mentioned here. Contact us today for a free SEO audit.