Being a small start up could be a challenge, especially when you have budgeting constraints which is usually the case.
Here are a few marketing tips to help you grow your business, and guess what? They won’t cost you so much too.

Differentiate or die
You are brimming with ideas; you are multitalented but eh, slow down! You need to represent something in the minds of your consumers else you lose relevance, it’s called differentiation. And that’s as true whatever your offering is. Craft a single minded message for your product or service.

Don’t exaggerate 
If you want to be consistently relevant, then your messaging has to be honest. The most effective ads are brand truths well told. Use the back of business cards
Your business card introduces your business to prospects. Let it sell you, you won’t believe how many people will form an opinion about your business based on your call card. Let it state what you do clearly.

Use your stationary
Same with your letterheads and compliments slips – use them to get your marketing message across.
Invest in credibility
Are there professional qualifications you need to get? Get them. It may not be for now, or the investment outlay might be much but you will reap the benefits on the long run.

Give away unusual freebies

Be creative with your collaterals. Pens may be forgettable and boring but what if you have materials with multiple uses e.g. a pen with flash drive functions too? It won’t cost you an arm and a foot.

Seek and use testimonials

If you have customers that have had good experience with you, then use them. Put their testimonies on your website or your flyer.

Give a guarantee
If you truly believe in your product or service, guarantee it. Offer money back if they’re not 100% satisfied. Truth is that very few people will actually seek to abuse it and it will get you more customers.

Seek referrals
If you have done a good job for someone, then you shouldn’t be afraid to ask for referral from them except you did a shoddy job in the first place.
Set up a referral programme
The big companies use it, so why not you? If someone has referred a business to you, a small token to say thank you won’t kill you.

Use your ring back tone
Your ring back tone is a chance to sell. Rather than the generic tone, you can create a customised sales message for your phone. Check with your network provider on how to set this up.

Network everywhere
Wherever potential customers or referrers meet, be there. Good networking is about farming contacts not hunting out deals… don’t expect results on day one. You need to work at it and be seen regularly.

Use promotional people

You can hire good promotional temps at very low cost to hand out flyers or otherwise spread the word. Dress them well, make sure they know your business inside out and ensure they are well motivated too.

Focus on how your staff represent your company
People will judge your business on the people within. Use mystery shoppers to work out what the experience is like. Incidentally, a member of your family can’t be a mystery shopper. They are too close to the business even if they don’t work in it.

Text your customers
How cool would it be to get a text from your hair stylist reminding you about your appointment that afternoon? It’s so easy and cheap to text customers; every business should be doing it. Use automated SMS systems to make it easy. Remember to give customers an easy to opt out of further text messages.

Source: [Verdant Chronicles]