Business Consulting 101 - Small Business - Age old marketing strategies but still gold

Small Business - Age old marketing strategies but still gold

These age old but still relevant marketing strategies if used wisely could greatly benefit your small business. The following may be old but you can still mine gold.

Promotional gifts

Want to get a little extra bang for your buck at the tradeshow? Giving away promotional gifts is a great way to do so.

Tradeshows

The power of tradeshows should never be underestimated. As mentioned above, many people don’t know how to network in person anymore, which puts them at a huge disadvantage.

If you can network, you’ve got a leg up.

The best way to get coverage by the media is to attend tradeshows. Media professionals are likely to be there, and if you can use that opportunity to become friends with someone influential—from your industry, from the media, or from somewhere else—then you’ll start to see doors opening up that never would have otherwise.

Events

One way to get coverage in a paper is to throw some kind of event. That could be a launch party or an announcement, and if you can make the event exciting enough, then it will almost guarantee that you get some exposure.

Unfortunately, not every company has an announcement exciting enough to warrant regular conferences. Likewise, not every company can afford to repeatedly hire out venues and entertainment.

But there are other types of events that you can get coverage for, too. An example of this might be a competition—run a competition with an interesting prize and it will become newsworthy thanks to the value that it provides for the readers/viewers of that media.

Even hiring can be spun into an “event” if you get creative.

Media coverage

Better yet though, why not try to get free media coverage? If you can get an article into a local paper or an industry/niche magazine, that could be priceless exposure that brings in a lot of new customers.

But how do you go about doing that?

Well again, you should go traditional if you really want to be effective, and try building a relationship with a journalist or editor. Networking is a forgotten art and it works best if you can do it in person—try visiting some tradeshows or seeing if any of your existing contacts can put you in touch with someone who will listen.

You also need to think of ways to create a story around your business that will be newsworthy for the publication/outlet you’re targeting. For a local paper, telling your story might be enough (this is good for alumni publications too), but for an industry magazine you’re going to have to find some way to put a ‘new’ spin on the existing niche.

Don’t worry if the magazines aren’t directly related to you or your business, either—you could get into a magazine about sustainability, for example, if you can find a novel way to cut emissions. Everything is news to someone!

Paid-for advertising

Back in the day, we would reach out to a publisher and offer to pay a one-off or monthly fee for the right to have our advertisement in their publication/on their channel.

And this is a strategy that still works!

Television advertising is still a very viable option, even for entirely web-based companies. Likewise you can get advertising in newspapers and magazines, or on radio stations. It’s relatively rare to find an advertisement for a website in a magazine, so if you can create a compelling image and get it into a relevant publication you might have found a perfect route to market. Local radio stations and newspapers, meanwhile, are a perfect fit for local businesses (and just as targeted as Facebook ads!).

Even if you want to advertise online, this is good strategy to take. Lots of bloggers use Google AdSense and other large programs to find ads for their sites, but if you approach them yourself and offer to pay for a banner on their site, they’ll be glad for the guaranteed sale and will probably give you much more prominence on the page as a result. This will help you to improve awareness for your brand and will help to set you apart from the competition—and you’ll often actually get a better rate as a result.