Most businesses can't spend big to grow, here's how to develop yours on a shoestring.
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Every business would quite like to secure a bit of growth, but how do you achieve it? You could, of course, invest in a multi-million-pound marketing campaign, hire an army of new workers and open up in dozens of new locations…but then when you wake up in the real world you’ll realise that that’s probably not plausible.
If you’re not blessed with a bottomless pit of cash – who is? – then you need to think more creatively about how you can expand your business. You need to think carefully about what it is you want to achieve – maybe spend some time identifying your key priorities first – and then come up with a plan that will fix that issue.
What options do you have open to you?
You don’t have to have a big budget to make a big noise, you just have to think carefully about how you’re going to do it. Why not organise a publicity stunt to capture attention. You can learn from large scale stunts – such as these highlighted by The Drum – and apply them to your own scale.
This might be as low-budget as a bit of creative Photoshopping for a social media poster or as high-profile as something in a town or city centre. Being innovative and harnessing the art of the surprise is key to fostering a creative culture in your workplace – so this will have the dual benefit of raising brand awareness and getting the most from your employees.
Giveaways and competitions
Advertising can be pretty expensive – and isn’t always that effective – so why not try something a little different? Local newspapers love nothing more than to offer their readers something free – or a money off voucher – to help drive their own sales, so think of a way you could run a competition with them.
You’ll typically see your offer – and therefore logo or picture – featuring on the front page as well as inside and often this is cheaper than paying for the equivalent ad space. It also feels more exciting too – people love free stuff – and is great to get your name out and attract new customers.
Got an exciting idea for a new product range or service that you’d love to offer but can’t afford? Why not put it out there on a crowdfunding platform and see if you can get customers to help you launch it?
Not only does crowdfunding offer a financial solution, it also acts as a useful marketing tool – helping to build up interest and enthusiasm among an engaged audience that might well act as ambassadors for your brand if they have a vested interest in your success.
Give people an incentive – early access or a special offer, for example – to entice them to part with their cash for your cause.
What do your customers – and prospective customers – enjoy in their spare time? Paying to sponsor a sports team, competition or event – such as a food fair or beer festival – can be a great way to raise awareness of your brand and associate yourself with something fun that people enjoy.
All of these ideas are fairly low-budget ways to make a big noise, reach out to new customers, energise your workforce by doing something fun and, hopefully, grow your business as a result. Think outside the box, be bold and let us know how you get on…