So you’ve got $5,000 to market your business. But what should you spend it on to get the ‘best bang’ for your buck?
Here’s the TOP FIVE marketing activities you can do to promote and grow your business with an investment of $5,000 – in order of importance:
1. BUILD YOUR ONLINE BUSINESS
Amazingly, around 60 percent of SMEs are yet to establish a convincing presence online. With millions of consumers searching daily online for products or using the internet to research a business before making a buying decision, how can any business afford not to have an online shop-front. A $5,000 budget should buy you a professional ten-page website with necessities like e-news, e-commerce, blogs, forums and a backend content management system (CMS), so you can administer and edit the site yourself.
2. DIRECT MAIL CAMPAIGN
Most small to medium businesses find that the majority of their regular customers come from within a 5km radius of their front door. You can send ‘unaddressed mail’ to businesses, post office boxes or street addresses in your local area from just 12 cents an item through your local Australia Post distribution centre.
Cleverly designed DL size (envelope size) flyers work best if printed on glossy, mid-weight stock – this helps take away the common junk mail feel. About 10,000-15,000 flyers designed, printed and delivered should cost you less than $5,000 and achieve instant results.
3. REFRESH YOUR BRAND
If you’ve had your logo for more than five years your brand is probably looking a little tired. Let’s face it, how fashionable are your clothes from five years ago? A modern redesign or upgrade of your logo can virtually re-launch your business to the market place. A new look gives you and your sales team a reason to revisit all customers, old and new, to re-introduce your business and its exciting new brand.
4. TARGETED PRINT ADVERTISING
Most media publications charge a premium for advertising because of their high circulation. However, your target may only account for a small portion of these readers.
Find a trade magazine or publication that directly targets your industry or market and book a full-page ad or series of half pages. For new advertisers, larger adverts deliver higher impact and can also give you some bargaining power to promote your brand through the publication’s other channels (events, etc.).
5. HIGHER IMPACT SIGNAGE
Your building signage is like free advertising – promoting your business to passing traffic and potential trade everyday (and if illuminated, night traffic as well). Like a house for sale with no “For Sale” sign out the front, poor signage can cost your business severely. Is your main logo displayed on your building professionally, preferably in 3D, full colour and illuminated at night? Consider window displays printed on banner mesh or one-way vinyl that allows you to see out but display full colour graphics from the outside? Are your company cars and vans sign written or do they at least display magnetic decals promoting your brand and website? Then there’s informational signage – do customers know where to park, opening hours of your business, which products you sell or what services you offer?
Marketing is an integral part of small business management.
If you have only a limited marketing budget, it is imperative to spend it prudently.
It may mean the difference between profit and loss.
Tony Eades is the creative director for DesignShop, Australia’s fastest growing online design and print solution provider. He is a business marketing expert, with more than 20 years experience in design, advertising and client media campaigns. Ph: 1300 55 30 33 e: [email protected]