Top 5 tips for maximizing a small marketing budget

Even if you have a small marketing budget, you can make a big splash if you have the right advice.

As you travel into the office every day, you’re likely to come across massive ad campaigns distributed across print newspapers and magazines, billboards, radio broadcasts, outdoor advertising panels and various other media outlets. While the big brands have impressive budgets to support product launches, today’s marketing channels are more open than ever to new entrants. Even if you have a small marketing budget, you can make a big splash by having a quality product, passion for success and an eye toward earning the loyalty of your customers.

Today, we’ve shifted from a model of model of messaging to relationship-based marketing where you build up a brand based upon quality. Whether you’re a small firm looking to get impressive results from a basic budget or a larger firm looking to get creative with your marketing spend, you can allocate your marketing budget in a more effective manner.

Often managers build a new campaign only to find the results fall short of expectations. Rather than assuming what you know about your business will be understood, smart marketing techniques are based around solving problems and delighting your potential customers. Even if you have the best product, you have to work towards building a relationship with your prospects before they can come on board as customers, brand advocates and referrals for your business.

1. Think small in order to think big

Having great aspirations for your brand is an important part of long term planning. Before you act big, however, it’s important to think small by approaching new marketing campaigns with humility. At its core, an effective marketing campaign will resonate with your potential customers to help them solve problems. Giving your customers the ability to digest your offer and extending a hand to open up a business relationship is much more effective than a large scale ad buy all at once. Take time to collect data in terms of which prospects are responding to your messages and why so you can adjust your marketing spend accordingly. By identifying the core messages and practices which enhance your conversions you can hone in on a more successful implementation.

2. Look at opportunities for partnerships

There’s a good chance you’re focusing too much on paid sources of media without considering mutually beneficial partnerships with your vendors. Cross selling with business partners can provide a cost effective, trusted way to enhance your bottom line. Since you’re already in each other’s supply chains, integrating a consumer facing message to communicate your products is a natural opportunity. Walk into a grocery store today and you’ll find countless samples and ads for food products; at the same time you’ll find exclusive coupons which open up the door for grocery shopping – finding marketing agreements based upon mutual self interest can go a long way.

3. Encourage your customers to refer friends

Satisfying your customers and ensuring quality customer relations should be a core part of your marketing efforts. More effective than any message your company can distribute, referrals and recommendations from your existing customers resonate much more effectively. Make it easy for your customers to refer friends by offering them a discount on their bills and building a natural referral chain.

4. Review all the conversion data from your existing campaigns

For smart marketers on a limited budget, data is your friend. Rather than continuing ad buys based upon intuition start tracking conversion data carefully. You should know the cost per lead or sale from each of your campaigns and distribution channels. As great as that TV commercial might look, it could actually be hurting your bottom line compared to targeted search marketing campaigns. Take a careful look at how you might improve the results throughout your campaigns.

5. Integrate marketing into your support, development and management practices

Today, marketing isn’t just a customer facing practice. Make sure everyone in your organisation knows the core values, service promises and offers that give you an advantage over your competition. By working hard to deliver a better product, you’ll find your marketing messages resonate more widely since they’re backed by iron clad promises.

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IDG Online Staff

IDG Online
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