Navigating a cost of living crisis as a business can be a really difficult time, whether you usually supply to small businesses that are struggling or you are a B2C (business to consumer) business that is being impacted by consumers spending less. Either way, it is likely you are going to need to cut back some costs, whilst still getting your brand name out there to keep your business relevant in saturated markets. That’s why we’re here, to introduce cost effective marketing strategies for your business, to help you keep up your marketing which is essential. It can be tempting to cut all marketing costs, yet the impact that this could have on your business is significant, so try out these methods!
First up we have SEO, search engine optimisation, which is all about making sure that when someone searches for a term relevant to your brand, that your website appears high up in the search engine results pages. With other forms of digital marketing, such as PPC or paid social, you have to pay for the actual advertising space on Google or Facebook, along with a management fee on top. However, with SEO, you pay for the expertise of an agency and once your rankings improve, there is no cost. So, although the cost of working with a good agency for SEO Manchester or London based may be more than a management fee for other channels, it is a much more effective use of your budget as you don’t pay an actual fee to advertise. We would recommend working with an agency for your SEO, a well recommended one, as it is a very complex marketing strategy and investing in it is definitely worth it.
Another reason why SEO is much more cost effective is because you are investing your budget directly into users who are looking for what you sell. When SEO is done well, keywords should be selected for each page that are highly relevant to what is sold/the services that are offered on that page. For example, if you are a womens gymwear brand, on the leggings page you would want to target keywords like “Gym Leggings”, “Womens Gym Leggings”, “High Waisted Gym Leggings” and “Seamless Gym Leggings”, as long as those things are what you offer. Then, when you rank well and someone lands on your website, they will be highly likely to find what they are looking for. With other channels, you’re spending money to reach out to people who may or may not be interested in what you’re offering, whereas with SEO, you’re targeting people who you know will be interested.
SEO takes time to take effect, but once you have established strong rankings, with the right maintenance, it can provide a significant amount of long term results for your business.
Next up we have email marketing. Many people believe that email marketing is outdated, but when it comes to a cost effective marketing channel, it’s definitely one to consider. The first step for email marketing is to build up your mailing list, which you can do by offering your customers incentives to sign up to your mailing list, such as offering a 10% discount off their customers or service. Once you’ve built your list up, you can then send out personalised emails to them. You could collect feedback from them to improve your business, you could send out loyalty discounts and you could send out relevant content to do with your product.
In terms of cost efficiency, there are many free email marketing apps out there, although the features are basic. You can pay small subscriptions to access the premium features, which isn’t much at all. Then, this is definitely something that you can do yourself after following tutorials provided by the email marketing platform, as it is pretty straight forward. Create a content calendar with your plans for the emails you want to send out, then you can schedule emails to go live. You can also split your mailing list up into different sectors to help make the emails more personalised. For example if you’re a dentist, you can split your mailing list up by age so you are targeting the younger people with things like teeth straightening or whitening, then older audiences for things that are more common as you age, such as requiring fillings or dental implants.
Organic Social Media
One of the most commonly utilised marketing channels is organic social media, as it’s completely free and it allows you to build a strong sense of community amongst your consumers. It’s a great opportunity to communicate with customers, provide direct customer service and also to create a hub around your brand that people are loyal to. You need to make sure that you provide interesting and relevant content that they will enjoy, and that you don’t overload your social media with too many posts, as this can put them off.
As with email marketing, you can create a content calendar and schedule posts so you don’t need to worry about forgetting to post them. People think that organic social media is really easy, however you do need to put thought into it to build a following of people who are genuinely interested in your brand.
Ads Manager – Brand Awareness Campaigns
Ads Manager is a paid social platform that allows you to run sponsored adverts on Facebook and Instagram. This can be an expensive marketing avenue depending on your business, however it is much more affordable for you to run brand awareness campaigns. When you set up a campaign, you can choose whether you want to target conversions or brand awareness. When you select brand awareness, the way that audiences are targeted is slightly different, however it still allows you to get your brand’s name out there and to get people interested.
So, work with an agency to run some brand awareness campaigns. It’s good if the campaign has a strong purpose, which might be to encourage people to sign up to your mailing list, then you can target them through there afterwards. Or, perhaps you have a launch event coming up and want to target people in the local area. All of these things can be done and you can easily control the budget to make sure you are staying where you need to in terms of spending.
Last but not least, we have retargeting. There are lots of retargeting platforms out there to do this, but it basically involves collecting the data of people who have been on your website, or viewed your social media platforms, then showing them additional ads to remind them of your brand and to encourage them to make a purchase or enquire. This is notorious for providing a strong ROAS, and it can help to capture users who think about a purchase before committing to it straight away.