How to Promote Your Business Online Faster and for Free?
Marketing an online business is getting difficult due to the increasing competition in every niche. More and more businesses spending a lot of their money on promoting their businesses online. However, inexperienced business owners spend money without doing thorough research.
In this post, I am going to show you multiple ways to promote your business online for free and get faster results.
Before I am going to share business promotion techniques, here are some of the things that you should do to better understand your target audience. Again, without a proper plan, none of these marketing tips will work.
How to Define Your Target Audience
Who is going to buy your product basically? If you don’t know then you better not invest your time or money on promoting your business online.
You must have a proper audience in mind who you are going to sell your product. Promoting your product would be much easier for you when you know the exact person who is going to buy a product instead of the whole world. Sure, many people from different backgrounds might be interested in your product as well but you should be as specific as possible.
Here are some of the easiest ways to find your target audience:
Research your competition: Which specific niche your competitors are targeting on their websites? You can find out companies who are selling the same product as you and then research their audience. You don’t need to target the same market as your competitors but it might give you a hint for your niche.
Look at your current customer base: Who are your current customers, and why do they buy from you? Look for common characteristics and interests. Which ones bring in the most business? It is very likely that other people like them could also benefit from your product/service.
Once you find out your target market then your whole business messaging should keep it focused. Your website copy, promotional content, and, advertising would be targeted to a focused niche.
How to Promote Your Business Online?
Now, that we have a specific market to sell our product it is much easier to pick a number of different promotion techniques mentioned below. Not all of them might be useful for your business but you should try out as many as possible.
1. Business Directories
It is one of the most effective ways to promote service based businesses online. You can create a free listing on many local business directories. Make sure that you fill out all the important information about your business so people can understand what you offer. Getting customer reviews on those platforms also help your ranking on those platforms.
Here are some of the top business directories where you can create an account right now:
- Yellow Pages
- Better Business Bureau
- Angie’s List
2. Online Content Marketing
We all like to hear great stories. If you can deliver good stories to your target audience, you can attract a lot of new customers.
What is Content Marketing?
It is a marketing concept that involves the creation and sharing of online material in the form of videos, blogs, and social media posts. Content marketing itself does not directly help you generate sales but is intended to stimulate the interest of a user in your products or services.
That’s the textbook definition of content marketing but let me explain it further. Many brands use online content marketing to attract their target audience to their website/social media platform, so they can convert those users into sales.
So, by creating useful content for your target audience in the form of blog posts, videos, infographics, pdf, podcasts you can reach more people.
You can convert those visitors into a lead by offering them something more for free such as a free trial of your software, product discount, or perhaps a free e-book.
3. Promote Your Business Online with Guest blogging
Guest Blogging can be used as a way to promote your business online. In simple words, you can write a blog post on a third party website or blog to promote your personal/corporate brand.
Guest blogging sites expose brands to a relevant audience and can be an effective method to generate awareness.
Guest blogging offers a number of benefits for any business. By sharing your expertise on other companies’ websites, you can establish yourself as an authority figure within your market, build relationships with other thought leaders in your field and expose your brand to an entirely new audience.
Here’s how you can write a guest blog post:
Find out blogs which are read by your target audience. Check out their footer or header links for something like “Write for Us”. On this page, you can read their content policies and share with them your blog post idea.
Since not every blog will publish your content (when you are new) it is a good practice to collect emails or contact page URLs of all the blogs where you want to publish your post.
Make sure that you also place a link to your website so that people can contact you or read more about your business.
4. Promote Your Business with Email marketing
86% of professionals prefer to use email when communicating for business purposes. It is a powerful way to market your business as well as closing leads into customers.
Here’s how you can promote your business with email marketing:
First of all, you need the permission of sending promotional emails to your email subscribers. For that, you need a program which will collect all those emails. You can use MailChimp, Constant Contact, SendinBlue, or other email marketing tools to collect emails. With the help of those tools, you can collect emails, create signup forms, create landing pages, automation sequences, funnels, and a lot more.
Once you set up an account with an email marketing software, you need to place signup forms on important places of your website such as sidebar, headers, after post area, and in-content.
You can offer a discount, a free trial or an ebook to get their email. Once you have their email you can send them promotional emails. But before you do that, make sure to build up some trust with your potential customer. At this point, they might not be comfortable to buy from you because of a lack of trust.
So, build up trust with them by offering something free or useful. Show them that people are actually buying your stuff with reviews of your past customers, case studies, and client’s testimonials.
You can automate this process by creating email sequences.
5. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
It is a free traffic source that can be used to get a crazy amount of traffic on your website.
Organic search traffic can give your business a new boost. It can help you grow your audience, customer base and improve your brand recognition. SEO is a little different than other marketing channels mentioned in the post. It is one of the great ways to promote your business online.
It takes a lot of time and there are chances that Google can penalize your website for over optimization (it doesn’t happen very often though).
To best optimize your website for search engines, there are a few things which are very important in SEO. Please read this WordPress SEO guide even if you are not using WordPress because most of the concepts can be used on other content management systems.
6. Social Media Marketing
You can easily promote your business on social media platforms. You can promote it for free or if you have some advertising budget then you can also promote your business with paid social media marketing.
Before creating your social media content strategy make sure to perform social media competitors analysis. It will give you a lot of useful information about your competitor's social media strategy which will help you develop your own.
There are many social media platforms such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Pinterest, and a lot more. You can create an account and a business page on them for free. Then you can promote your business on those platforms.
If you have an advertising budget then you can use it to promote your product or services. Here’s a tutorial on how to set up facebook retargeting ads.
7. Influencer Marketing
Influencer marketing uses top content creators, specialized in their respective niches, to help you improve brand awareness, increase traffic, and drive your brand’s message to your target audience. These content creators already market to your ideal audience across different channels which you can take advantage of for your influencer strategy.
You can contact influencer in your niche to promote your product or service. It is an effective way to promote your business online. You can do it in two different ways either paid or cross promotion.
With paid influencer marketing, as it is apparent you have to pay some money to get your product promoted by the influencer. The rates are different in every niche and not all influencer marketers accept paid promotions.
The other way is to cross promote your product with influencers and offer them something valuable such as an ad placement or a cross promotion where you promote that particular influencer on your website or social media.
8. Promote Your Business on Facebook Groups and Reddit
You can create a Facebook group or a subreddit for people who might be interested in buying your product or service you offer. You don’t need to promote your business directly in your own group but by simply sharing useful content with your audience you can become a thought leader in your niche. When you achieve that, you can promote your product or service.
Other than that, you can also join many other groups and subreddits where your potential customers hang out. You can answer people questions about specific things, share with them useful insights and customer stories.
9. Google My Business
By creating a Google My Business listing you can be seen by customers in the Google Maps and Google’s search results.
It is a great way to promote your business online especially if you have a location which you can pinpoint in Google Maps.
To get a better ranking in Google Maps for your business you can use some these best practices:
- Complete all the information Google asks for.
- Publish Google My Business posts often.
- Add Video content to your Google My Business page.
- Add high-quality relevant photos to your Google My Business.
- Ask your customers to leave a review on your Google My Business page.
10. Video Marketing
Video marketing is any type of video you record and post with the intention of moving you towards your business goals.
When we talk about video marketing and eCommerce or digital marketing in general, the conversation tends to make a shortcut to YouTube. But, you can use video marketing just about anywhere. Social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat are also great places for video marketing content.
- Focus on telling a story, not sales because people buy stories.
- Use the first few seconds wisely to give clarity about your video.
- Create awesome YouTube thumbnails
- Write compelling video headlines
- Add relevant tags to your YouTube video before publishing.
- Add a relevant description of your video.
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