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Marketing on a Budget


Every business owner knows that marketing needs to be a top priority. But it can be a challenge to prioritize the cash so you can budget the right amount of money to gain traction in your campaign. Just because you are investing in marketing doesn’t mean that you need to break the bank.

There are so many marketing strategies… how do you choose the best approach to maximize your Return on Investment (ROI)? When money is tight, you need to be sure that your marketing spending will result in paying customers. First, you need to identify the best starting point, then you will generate the cash that’s needed to reinvest in your marketing campaign. Consider these proven tips to market your business when you have a limited budget:

Step 1: Identify Your Target Market

Which people are most likely going to buy your products and services? Knowing your target market is an essential step so that you can prioritize your spending in the marketing that will influence this group of people.

It’s impossible to appeal to every customer out there. Instead of trying to be the best for everyone, you’ll get more leverage by dialing your efforts to focus on your ideal demographic. Defining your target market gives you a natural direction, making it easier to make other decisions about your marketing. During this preparation, analyze demographics and psychographics. Getting into the psychology of it can help you identify where they are spending their money. Then, you can position your business in front of that flow of cash.

Step 2: Dial in Your Message

What is your Unique Selling Proposition (USP)? Weaving these unique points in your marketing message is a great way to show customers why they should do business with you instead of going to a competitor. Here are a few examples of how companies can communicate their USP to entice customers to buy:

  • Fast Delivery Services: Delivered in 30 minutes – or it’s free!

  • Reliability: When you absolutely, positively need to get it there (FedEx)

  • Healthy Ingredients: Natural, whole grain, gluten-free, non-GMO

  • Discount: VIP customers receive a 10% discount on every order

Once you know your USP, then you can work this message into your marketing materials.

Step 3: Partner with Joint Ventures

It makes sense to tap into a primed list of customers who are a good fit for your target audience. Often, you can find win-win partnerships by connecting with other businesses or providers in the same industry. When your products or services are complementary to those offered by others, then you can work together to increase sales for everyone involved.

For example, in a joint venture (JV) agreement, another company or provider can promote your product. In return, they receive a portion of the profits on all generated sales. This relationship goes both ways, with your business promoting the products or services of your JV partners.

Step 4: Create a Referral Program

A systemized referral program can be a powerful way to tap into the excitement of customers who are willing to help with your marketing efforts. Many customers look at reviews and ask friends and family for referrals before buying the products and services that are needed. You can encourage this activity by offering referral benefits for any customers that bring in new sales.

A referral program might be as simple as a $10 discount code for the referrer. Or, you can send a free gift when new transactions come through that were referred by an existing customer.

Focusing Your Efforts on Marketing

If you want your business to grow, then it’s important to spend at least 60% of your time and resources on marketing. The best way to maximize your efforts is by systemizing this marketing – it’s not effective to launch a new marketing program every once in a while. Systemization means that you can enjoy a steady flow of new customers, without the need to reinvent the wheel each time.

Check out these topics for more tips:

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