Every new business has one critical goal in mind. It needs to grow. The quicker it does, the faster it will turn a steady and ever-increasing profit. Most new business owners can see this, and they break out into a frenzy of advertising to get the pump primed. In many cases, however, they are missing one crucial step – using inexpensive marketing strategies.
Advertising is, of course, the lifeblood of any business but premature advertising can create an unforeseen problem. It can bring eager customers to your door before you are actually ready to receive them. Take a little time to get your house in order before summoning the mob.
This is also known as setting up a front. You want to appear to be a legitimate business because, well, you are. Yet you can ruin the first impression people have of you by being unprepared to deal with them.
File a Trade Name Affidavit
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One of the first things you want to do is file a Trade Name Affidavit. Please, understand that this is different from registering a trademark so that you don’t confuse both. This is not a corporation or an LLC, both of which cost time and money to set up, just a legal notice that you are DBA (doing business as) whatever name you select.
The fee for this is usually ridiculously cheap, and it gives you the right to open a bank account under that trade name. That way, when people ask you who to make the cheque out to, you have a legitimate-sounding trade name to use rather than having them make it out to you personally. This can help you boost your business credibility without breaking the bank. Using your personal account to request payment is often a sign of someone who is not serious about their business or is running something that is just slightly shady. You aren’t a corporation (yet) but it will sure seem that way to all your customers. You will appear bigger and more established just by doing this one simple thing.
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Get a trade name and a bank account. Oftentimes, mobile banking can be good for your business. After that, you can either have some business cards printed up or drop by your local office supply store and pick up some print-your-own card stock. These nifty little inventions allow you to design your own card, put a sheet of their special paper into your printer, and out comes a dozen perfect cards that snap apart and look absolutely as good as any you can get from a professional print shop. It’s a great way to save money since you can print more cards any time you need them, plus you can experiment with various designs.
Marketing Can Become a Lifestyle
Now that you have built up your appearance of legitimacy, you are ready to get down to some serious e-commerce marketing. Your first efforts need to be carefully considered since you don’t have a lot of money to spend.
You need to think about where your customers are most likely to be concentrated in both a real world and an online sense of the word. You wouldn’t want to post an ad for discount bikinis on a site for senior citizens, for example. Likewise, you wouldn’t want to paper an entire neighborhood of apartment buildings to advertise your painting company. If you were to invert those two campaigns and advertise bikinis to apartment dwellers and painting to senior citizens, you might have better luck.
Without knowing exactly what kind of business you are operating; it is not easy to provide specific marketing tips, but a few general principles apply to almost every business. The first thing to know is that you can never tell when your advertisements will pay off. You may get a call months after you stopped using a particular campaign, for example. You can also be barraged on the day after you post something. You never know but don’t ever give up. Keep advertising in every venue you can imagine. What others in your niche may have written off might turn out to be the most innovative marketing idea that will change your entire life and business.
It is always a numbers game. So, the greater bulk of advertising contacts you make, the higher number of positive responses you will receive. It is almost always a very low percentage of responses so a campaign that is twice as big will normally yield twice as many leads. After that, it is up to you to nail them down with face-to-face salesmanship. If you need a guide with learning how to choose the right search engine optimization agency near you, check out this article.
Now let’s look at a few specific ideas for getting your name around using the most inexpensive marketing strategies nobody in your industry ever tried before.
The very cheapest advertising is also the hardest. Promise yourself that you will call four people a day without fail. Jot down names and numbers of businesses as you move around town.
Call someone who uses services such as yours, or who has some sort of crying need for a product you sell. If you have a power washing business, call four businesses with gum all over their sidewalks.
If you sell T-shirts, call businesses that dress their underpaid crews in cheap but matching outfits. Explain to them why getting custom T-shirts can help them boost their offline marketing.
Don’t forget to call your own friends and relatives. Ask them if they know of anybody who might hire you. Cold calling is cheap, and it is also an excellent way to develop your in-person pitch. Don’t skip it. Do it. Entrepreneurs who understand how to close sales over the phone can never go out of business.
Next, you might think about broadening your reach a bit by getting some T-shirts and other promotional products made for yourself. Give away a cool-looking branded T-shirt and you turn the grateful recipient into a human billboard for your company. I told you how Russel Brunson used this strategy to generate over $100 million in sales.
Order some pens. Everybody needs them. Keep a box of flyers and coupons with you at all times. If you see a situation where you might be of service, but nobody is around, stuff a flyer in their mailbox or leave a doorhanger. The whole point of promotional items is to USE them, however.
Use Any Conceivable, Legitimate and Inexpensive Advertising Techniques You Can Think Of
Do you remember Guerrilla marketing? I mean the one popularized by Jay Conrad Levinson in 1984. Yeah! Any unconventional legitimate way you use to promote your products and services is an applaudable development.
Get them out into the world and get them working for you. Any campaign that shows results, you can double your order for next time.
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As for breaking into digital platforms, there are many places where you can post an ad for free, and you will probably get what you pay for. The reason they are free is because they are trying to build their new business off of you.
Later on, they plan on charging for their services. Use them, of course, but don’t be shy about paying a few bucks to those venues that charge. They can get away with charging for their ads because they have more eyeballs on the site. It’s all percentages, but don’t start with a huge campaign. Place smaller but identical ads onto multiple platforms. See which one pops better, then double down on that one.
There are loads of offline marketing strategies new business owners haven’t even scratched and they are wondering why they aren’t getting enough customers.
Also, always keep precise records of your ad campaigns and what kind of response you got. This is valuable market research you don’t want to pay for twice, and whatever you spend on it is tax-deductible so long as you have a receipt of some sort. Learn about the tax laws and how to apply for the Federal tax ID number.
The key to any new business is not hard to figure out. Work harder than your competitors. Do a better job even if it costs you more than you planned. Call your competitors and pretend you are a shop around customers. This can be sneaky, I know, but it works anyway because I’ve seen a lot of successful offline businesses doing the exact same thing. Get their price and then figure out how you can beat it. Keep advertising. Many businesses only spend advertising dollars on Quitting Business Sales. Don’t make that mistake.