For many people with build a name for themselves. There are decisions to be made, even mistakes to be made, and a lot to take in about marketing. There are a number of home based business resources that will make your business a success. Here are some proven ways to market your business without spending a lot of money.
Before you spend a nickel on advertising, or even buy business cards, you must find your niche. Who are your potential customers? Which segment of the population is looking for the product or service that you have? Chances are, if you sell roller skates, your target market will not be the elderly population. Conversely, if magazine subscriptions are your forte, Gen X people will likely be your best customers.
There are many different ways to get the word out about your business, and you should tailor your approach to your product or service. Keep track of all of your marketing efforts, and get rid of those that are ineffective, while at the same time beefing up what works. Here are some ideas to get you started:
Word of Mouth: Free promotion is great, so be sure to capitalize on all of the word of mouth advertising you can. Tell everyone in your circle of influence about your new business so that they can help you get the word out. This is easier nowadays with all the social media outlets like Facebook and Twitter, but do not neglect face to face and telephone conversations. Of course, the information you want passed around is how great your product or service is. Always remember to be professional, and under promise and over deliver.
Business cards: Not all marketing is online these days! Make sure to have professionally printed business cards with you at all times ao you can pass them out whenever the conversation turns to your business. Be sure to include an attractive logo, your name and the business’ name, good contact information, and products or services your company provides.
Other printed marketing pieces, like letterhead and envelopes, brochures, and direct mail pieces should have the same professional look and logo as your business card.
Website: These days, customers expect businesses to be online, so having your own website, even a simple one is an important steps towards establishing your credibility It does not need to be fancy or flashy, but it should be a good reflection of your business. A great but inexpensive web designer can be one of your best home based business resources. Make sure to use the same logo and colors you used on your business cards – consistent branding is important, even for a home based business! Include a list of your products or services, and perhaps samples or photos, pricing, reviews or testimonials from customers, a page that tells about you and makes you real to the customer, as well as user-friendly contact information will go a long way towards promoting your business.
Media: Contact your local newspaper about your new business; often they are interested in doing a piece on local businesses. Local radio and TV stations may also consider doing a feature story or interview. These are great outlets to show your expertise in your field. Newspaper, magazine, and coupon booklet ads can be good home based business resources for new customers.
Networking: You can display at shows that are relevant to your niche. You might also consider advertising with a complementary business, which can be beneficial to both of you. (You sell bakery goods—why not sell cookies at the local coffee shop, and post flyers with all the other baked goods you make?) You can join the Chamber of Commerce and other professional networking organizations to meet new people and make your business visible.
Online Outlets: Take advantage of all the free online advertising you can. Great sites like Craigslist and Oodle allow you to advertise free. Having a business listing with Google or Google Places can help your business come up on top when someone does a search. You might also consider writing some articles or blog posts about your business and your niche. This helps to establish yourself as an expert in your field, and you can link back to your website from where ever the pieces are published. There are limitless home based business resources.
Keep track of all the promotional work you do, and do not be afraid to ask your customers how they found you. Going forward, use the marketing that works, and forget about what doesn’t.
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