How To Promote Your New Business In 5 Simple Steps
Setting up a new business is never easy, no matter how experienced you may be.
Starting from scratch has a host of problems and challenges, not least of which is promotion. However, promotion is not as hard as it used to be. Thanks to the rise of the internet and current advances in technology, never before was it so simple (and cheap) to promote your business.
If you’re not online, you technically don’t exist as a company. Love it or hate it, this is a stone cold fact. That’s why one of the first things you should do after starting your company is set up a good website. It doesn’t need to be anything complex or fancy at first, just a nice and simple page with all your relevant contact info. Later you can add bios, presentations of the projects you’re most proud of, elaborate designs and whatever bells and whistles you desire.
A dedicated blog can also be an interesting way to promote your company. You can post yourself, or have someone place content relevant to your line of work. A blog can be used to share and show off your expertise, and let people move towards your actual business and website. It can also make you a bit more, for lack of a better word, “real” to your potential customers. This can be used as an opportunity to speak to potential customers. They can comment on your blog, and you can join in on the conversation. Hanging out on niche and specialized forums can also be a useful promotional tool. Just don’t spam people – be genuine.
Go Offline – Events and Guerilla Marketing
Here we switch from online to offline. This may be the most challenging way you can promote your business, but also the most fun, and with potentially the greatest success rate. We are speaking of a type of guerrilla marketing tactic. Namely, you should organize a big promotional event for your new business. You can go easy, and just host a party in a local bar or café. You can also figure out a theme that fits your business or main product. This will help you reach out to local customers, help you create a more personal relationship, and may even give you a chance to hand out some samples.
However, we said this one was challenging for a reason – the best results are directly proportional to your creativity. A party is all well and good, but if you want the best results, you should try out something original and cool. One thing you can try is a flash mob – dress up in costumes, and hand out samples or promotional material. Getting a bunch of stickers and placing them all around the city where you think your target audience hangs out is also an effective and popular tactic.
Now, of course, this one depends on how you want your venture to be perceived. For some, these tactics don’t really convey a sense of professionalism. To each his own. For companies that allow themselves the luxury of having a sense of humor, this can help humanize the whole venture.
Don’t forget about Social media
Social media is no longer an advantage it’s a necessity. Before, properly utilizing your social media pages gave you an edge over your competition. Today, people expect that you have, at least, a Facebook page and a Twitter profile. And if you’re into any kind of visual art, Instagram is a must too. But, the bright side here is that not everybody uses these properly. Namely, it’s not enough to have a haphazardly cobbled up page. You should optimize all your pages. Take care that all the info you type in is exact and precise. Place Google maps routes on your pages, give out as much info as you can and try to moderate it as often as you can.
You also need to put in the work, you need to interact with your audience. Now, this may sound very annoying, but you can get great feedback. In a way, social media can serve as a kind of litmus test for the direction you’re taking. It’s a good way to keep your ear easily on the ground for anything new and exciting that’s coming up in your niche.
This one really hinges on how charismatic and sociable you are. However, know that if you can pull this off, you will not only promote your business but create potential business partners (and even learn something new!) as well.
So, you can do this in a couple of ways (and no, we’re not going to talk about LinkedIn). Join in on any group networking meetings that are being held near you. Another option is to hang around places that are relevant to your line of work. You should definitely attend any conventions or meet – ups relating to your business. Attending seminars could also be interesting. So, for example, if your business sells artisanal coffee, attending a barista seminar may be a good idea. You can do the same if you sell espresso makers.
This is the regular, old-fashioned type of marketing. We’re talking about signs, posters, billboards, commercials, cards… One of the easier (though the most expensive) of ways you can advertise is setting up a commercial. Since we’re talking about a new business here, we are going to assume that you don’t have the biggest of budgets. However, this need not discourage you, since all you need is a camera and an ok time slot – prime – time slots are oversaturated anyway.
Setting up posters, on the other hand, can be quite cost – effective. You just need a trip to a photo – copy place, and some legwork. Just remember, this is already a low – cost option, so there’s really no need to cheap out on the materials – get a good banner mesh, quality glue and whatever other gear you need.
Promoting your business may seem like a daunting task, but as long as you cover all your bases, you are going to be fine. You can go online and do your stuff there, or hang out with people who have been in the business longer than you were. Just remember not to limit yourself to only one option, but don’t spread yourself to thin either.