Here’s the truth: social media is not an option anymore. It’s a necessity. Especially if you are a business owner or an online marketer looking to make it big in your industry. So you want as many cheap social media marketing tips as you can get.
You want to make your dollar stretch. Well that’s why you’re here. Keep reading to learn the importance of social media marketing and our tips we have to give you.
Today, 8 out of 10 buyers start their purchasing process through online research. Out of these eight, six will turn to social media as their starting point.
According to a study published by The Drum, Facebook alone influenced 62% of consumers’ online and offline purchases in 2016.
The content on your social media pages is often the deciding factor whether the buyer will continue to your website or not.
Another reason why social media marketing has become crucial to small businesses is its cost-effectiveness. As compared to the older and more traditional ways of marketing like television, radio, and print media, marketing through social media can be really inexpensive.
With limited time and tight budgets, small businesses often find it difficult to beat the competition. However, with some creative thinking and a bit of innovation, anyone can come up with some inspiring ways to market their businesses.
Ready to see how far you can stretch those dollars? Here are some cheap social media marketing ideas for compact businesses operating on a small budget.
Cheap social media marketing tactics at a glance
Here are all the 16 online marketing strategies you can use to promote your business at a fraction of the cost.
- Publish incredible content.
- Use Facebook.
- Create video content.
- Check with your web host to get ad promo credits.
- Become a dedicated Social Networker.
- Create infographics.
- Reconstruct old studies.
- Revamp your old blog posts.
- Promote your content on LinkedIn.
- Create a referral program for your customers.
- Use email marketing.
- Host a contest.
- Team up with another business.
- Win online badges.
- Make the most out of local marketing.
- Optimize your social media marketing campaigns.
Publish incredible content. Need we say more? No conversation about online marketing is complete without mentioning the importance of kick-ass content.
Even if writing is not your cup of tea, you can easily hire someone to churn out great articles for your blog. Try best practices for your industry, tips and strategies collections, top 10 lists, etc. Check out this post if you need the inspiration to create content for your social media.
Use Facebook for cheap social media marketing. According to Business Today, if Facebook was a country, it’d be the biggest one in the world with 2.2 billion monthly active users!
Facebook has become an inevitable channel if you are trying to build your brand’s presence via digital marketing.
And even though the general environment of Facebook seems casual, it calls for an active social media marketing strategy.
Start by creating a Business Fan Page for your business. Pay special attention to the page layout, as visual component plays a key role in user experience.
It must be noted though that you can only reach so many people through organic (unpaid) advertising on Facebook.
If you want a paid advertising method that’s cost-effective and saves you a lot of time, consider running a Facebook Ads campaign; there’s a reason why 94% marketers prefer Facebook Ads over any other paid digital marketing channel.
Create video content. According to the latest report from Hubspot, 87% of businesses are using video as a marketing tool. Out of which 76% said it helped them increase sales.
You can make instructional videos and help your audience understand how to use your product or service. Or you can even shoot a behind-the-scenes video and communicate your brand story with people.
Check with your web host to get ad promo credits. If your budget doesn’t allow you to run massive ad campaigns, look for coupons and discounts for paid Google ads or Facebook ads.
In addition to many online sites, a few web hosting services also offer ad discount codes to their members. Contact your web host and see if they offer ad coupons too.
Become a dedicated social networker. There are several social media networks you can join – Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, LinkedIn, etc. Create business accounts on all these platforms (if they’re right for your business) and start connecting with your audience.
Creating your social media profiles on these networks is free, and can be very effective in reaching the target audience. Also, 71% of people worldwide are using one type of social media or another, and these numbers are expected to grow even further. Check out this post to get ideas on how to market your business on Facebook.
Create infographics. Infographics have become immensely popular in the digital marketing world. People find them great because they make it so easy to digest even the dullest information. In addition, people love to share them, so they are an incredible way to drive up links and referral traffic.
Okay, so hiring a designer on your own to create an awesome infographic will not be a cheap social media marketing strategy. But it can be a one-time investment that brings in great leads and gives you good exposure.
Or you can DIY one if you don’t mind the challenge. With a little understanding of Adobe Illustrator and some free vector kits, you can create an infographic yourself. Need inspiration? Check out Visual.ly for some stunning ideas.
Obviously, you wouldn’t want to create infographics just to sell your products or services. That’s why it’s called “info”graphic, because its main purpose is to give information and not promote your business. However, you also need to add branding to it so people will immediately know who created it and will be able to give you a proper credit. Adding your brand’s logo somewhere that won’t distract them from reading is highly recommended.
Reconstruct old studies. If you can’t afford to hire content writers to create new content for your blog, don’t worry. This is one really unexplored and cheap social media marketing tactic; instead of writing new content, how about revamping an old study that already exists online?
A lot of studies are conducted every year, and many of these reports and statistics go unnoticed.
Find a research or a study that relates to your specific industry and spruce it up. Add images, charts, and highlight the important parts of the study. Add your own insights and predictions based on the data.
You don’t have to be an ace writer to be able to do this; the data will do the talking for you. Just don’t forget to cite your sources.
Revamp your old blog posts. Just as you can polish up old research studies, you can re-create your old articles as well.
Turn a series of blog posts into an eBook. Transform an old webinar into a video tutorial. Don’t be afraid to rehash your old content; odds are there will be a lot of people who never got to see your old content. This way, it will be a totally new piece of content for a significant chunk of your audience.
In addition to creating an account and completing your profile information, join groups and share your content. It’s also the best place to connect with the who’s who in your industry and enter into a dialogue with your connections.
Create a referral program for your customers. How about offering your present customers a free month of service? It could also be a free product or maybe some other kind of reward for referring new customers. The can mean a lot your business growth.
Remember, word-of-mouth can be a pretty powerful marketing tactic for a business. According to The New York Times, 65% of new business comes from referrals. Forget about using other cheap social media marketing tactics; this costs you almost nothing!
Use email marketing. Yes, guys, email marketing still works! According to Mailigen, 89% of digital marketers use email marketing as their primary tool for generating leads.
It’s a great way to attract new customers and get them to engage with your business. It also gives you incredible opportunities to maintain relationships with your existing customers.
The best way to do this is by offering a highly valuable piece of content to your website visitors who sign up for your newsletters. For example, you can get a free eBook detailing the #1 digital marketing strategy to triple your sales when you sign up for our newsletter.
Remember, don’t start bombarding them with salesy emails; slowly nurture your subscribers with useful content until they feel good about becoming your paying customers. You can start your email campaigns with free email marketing services like MailChimp, Constant Contact, ActiveCampaign, SendPulse, etc.
Host a contest. Nothing draws the crowd quite like the promise of free goodies. You don’t really need to break your bank for an expensive prize; a stylish backpack or fancy coffee mugs might be enough to attract some users.
Or what about a photo competition? For example, get users to share a photo of them using your product, with a hashtag (#) to help you find their picture. You can then set up a prize draw, and pick a photo. Then give out a freebie to the winner(s). Check out Rafflecopter if you don’t know how to host a contest. They make it super easy to set up a contest.
You can also do the same thing with videos. Do keep in mind that with video competition, you will get fewer people entering but you will get better quality entries as people have taken the time to make the video.
Then you can use these images and videos of valuable user-generated content elsewhere in your marketing campaigns. Talk about a win-win.
Team up with another business. One of the most popular cheap social media marketing strategies is partnering with a business related to your industry for a joint project. It means getting twice as much brand exposure and attention.
We are not talking about teaming up with your direct competitor, but a business that’s relevant to your industry. For example, if you have a catering business, you can team up with a bakery or a florist. This introduces you to a whole new audience that’s relevant to your niche.
Win online badges. Several industries have business awards you can apply for, providing you with an online badge you can put up on your site. These badges are a great way to boost credibility and build trust with new customers. More trust = more sales. Often you can get these at no cost to you. Just complete the certification associated with the badge/company.
Make the most out of local marketing. Did you know that 85% of people search for local businesses online before buying anything?
According to Search Engine Watch, 61% of local searches online result in a purchase within 2 hours!
One creative way to use this to your advantage is by offering your product or service as a prize in a local event! This also helps you build brand awareness as you connect with the local community.
Optimize your cheap social media marketing campaigns. A lot of businesses fail to realize that optimizing their social media strategy can be incredibly effective in reaching new customers.
Here are some really easy ways you can optimize your marketing campaign to make sure you are targeting as many potential customers as you can.
- Find which hashtags are trending in your industry right now and use them in your social marketing strategy.
- Use keyword-optimized images in your blog posts, articles, social media updates, and almost any piece of content you create.
- Be active on multiple social media platforms. According to Hubspot, almost 84% of businesses use Facebook and Twitter. Figure out which other networks you should be using; for example, if your business is in retail, fashion, home décor, or cooking niches, you can consider Pinterest and Instagram.
- Post at least one to three times per day. Hubspot says that 70% of marketers post on social media at least once every day and 19% post three times a day.
You don’t need a big budget to market your business on social media. It’s entirely possible to use cheap social media marketing strategies to promote your brand, but you have to be able to dedicate a decent bit of time to it.
First, outline your goals – what you hope to accomplish from a social media campaign. Once you have clearly defined this, you can use these inexpensive marketing tactics to create a strategy around your goals. Feel free to contact us if you’d like to schedule a free consultation about your social media marketing campaigns.
Do you know any other cheap social media marketing tactics we missed? We’d love to hear what works for YOUR small business. Let us know in the comments below.