Advertising is a great way to let people know about your business, no matter how established or new it may be. You don’t need to have a huge budget to spread the word. You don’t have to spend a lot of money on advertising, and there are many free advertising ideas that will work for any company.
Look at Rolls-Royce, Kiehls, or Huy Fong Foods (the creators of Sriracha). All brands do not bother with paid advertising. They instead use social media and word-of-mouth campaigns to increase brand awareness.
Top 25 free advertising ideas for small business
We have assembled 25 great free advertising ideas that businesses can use to get started. Many of these ideas are available even for those with a large advertising budget.
1. Claim any profiles or listings
There are many online directories, review sites, and lists. Check that your business has been claimed on Yelp. Also, ensure that all information is current.
2. Find other opportunities to get listed
You should look for ways to list your company on review sites or directories that you aren’t already using. You might find directories that are related to your niche or industry, as well as listings in the neighborhood, city, and state for local businesses with physical addresses.
3. Develop your social media presence
It’s becoming harder than ever for social media to have an organic impact (read: without paying anything). It doesn’t mean that you should ignore it. People still use social media to find out about businesses.
In fact, 25% of Millennials use social media to find a company. This is not a Google search or a visit to the website. You should have an active profile on any social media channel you choose.
4. Search for your business
Your Google Business Listing must be current. Your profile will be the first thing that someone sees when they search for your company. Make sure it is complete and optimized. Upload photos or videos! Don’t forget your contact information and operating hours.
This is particularly important if you own a local business that has a physical brick-and-mortar location. It helps to ensure your business appears in Google Maps.
5. Join us in the conversation
You can find discussions and forums about your industry or business on the Internet. Your customers might even be talking about your business online.
Don’t just send in a link with an obvious advertisement. You should instead add value to the customer by answering their questions, sharing your knowledge, and, in case of unhappy customers, making a genuine effort to help. Because forum threads can be searched for years, a single post can provide passive income over a long period of time.
6. Comments on blogs and articles
Look for articles and blog posts and articles by thought leaders that relate to yours but are not direct competitors. Please leave thoughtful comments to avoid appearing spammy! Your perspective on the topic.
7. Start blogging
If you aren’t already blogging you should! Your website’s ranking in search results can be affected by how often you share relevant content. Customers are more likely to find you the higher up you are on a page.
8. Participate in and host Twitter chats
Twitter chats can be a great way to get your name out there. There are many opportunities to contribute to existing chats even if you don’t have the time or bandwidth to host one. This list contains chats that are related to your industry. It was created by TweetReports.
9. Create an email newsletter
Email can be one of the most powerful advertising tools. The reason is simple: Your email list has opted in to receive advertisements and other messages from you. In exchange for information or offers, they have given something of value (their Email address). Use it wisely.
10. Speak at an event
You can share your knowledge by participating in a panel or speaking at an event. You can position yourself as a thought leader by choosing events that are closely related to your industry or business. This will allow you to reach an audience that is (hopefully!) a good fit with your product or business.
11. Meet with the press
To submit press releases to local and industry news, you don’t have to hire a PR company. To get the word out, create press releases for big announcements. Check out this list to find free distribution services.
There are subreddits that cover every topic. Reddit is a great place to post about your business. It’s important to not be too salesy and to let people know that you are representing a business. Be genuine and helpful and make an effort to get involved in the community.
13. Offer to guest blog
You can find opportunities to write guest posts for blogs or sites related to your industry. This can drive traffic to your site and establish you as a thought leader within your industry. Kissmetric’s guide has helpful tips.
14. Repurpose your content
It’s a great way of getting more value from existing content. You can get the content that you already own — free. It doesn’t matter if you want to polish an old blog post or turn an Ebook into an Email Course or transform a listicle into an engaging video. Repurposing opens up new opportunities to reach whole new audiences.
15. Ask for referrals
Referring your customers to others is an easy and free way to spread word-of-mouth advertising. Referring a friend to your business is the most trustworthy form of advertising. Many people won’t consider referring a friend to your company, so it’s important to ask.
Also read: 8 Best Referral Marketing Software
16. Create infographics
Infographics can be used to convert not-so-visual data into highly shareable content. Infographics can be shared far and wide thanks to visual social media networks such as Pinterest.
17. Reward your customers
As a follow-up to our previous tip, think of ways you can reward loyal customers for referring others or writing positive reviews. You can reward customers with free products, swag, or a discount. These are great ways to build customer loyalty and encourage them to do business with you. It’s great if your customers share positive experiences on social media.
18. Make a website
You’re most likely familiar with this process, but if you haven’t, now is the time to do it! Wix, Weebly, and WordPress make it easy for anyone to build a website. No programming skills are required. There are tons of tutorials available for WordPress, and other website builders that make it easy to get started.
Whatever website-building tool is used, having a site can make it easier for customers to find you via search engines such as Google.
19. Keep your website up-to-date
Don’t let your website sit dormant. It is essential to keep your website updated with new content in order to rank high in Google’s search results. Your site should be up-to-date, mobile-optimized, and well-maintained. Many users will abandon your site if it doesn’t function or looks good on mobile.
20. Optimized for SEO
SEO tools such as Yoast, and conducting some basic keyword research that will help you rank higher in search results. The days of the Yellow Pages are over. People now use Google to find businesses. It’s crucial to do everything you can to help them locate you.
21. Get awards for your business
You can find awards from your local Chamber of Commerce, Chamber of Commerce, professional and non-profit organizations. Although there are many awards, it is not surprising that you will be nominated.
Not only will it build trust and connections with your community but it can also help you to increase awareness of your business. You could do a service project together with your team or serve as a leader by being on a board.
23. Request for reviews
Although reviews are important, did you know that customers are more likely to share negative customer experiences than positive ones? Yelp and Google are not likely to share the goodwill of happy customers.
It is important that you ask your most loyal customers to share their positive experiences with your brand.
24. Participate in networking events
Networking in person is a great way to make connections with potential customers and business partners for businesses of any size or industry. Paid ads are powerful, but face-to-face connections and word-of-mouth remain the best form of advertising.
25. Forge partnerships with other businesses
If you are a photographer, you will likely have clients who want their hair and makeup done. If you are a hair stylist or makeup artist, you will most likely be working with brides and grooms who may need a photographer.
It is a great way to generate free word-of-mouth advertising by forming relationships where you can work together and refer customers one to another.
Last Line — Free advertising ideas
Paid advertising is a viable option. It can be effective and has the potential to reach a large audience. It does have its downsides, including the fact it is very expensive. Before you make a large investment, it’s worth looking at free advertising ideas of the options available.
You might also consider hiring a marketing mentor who will guide you through the process of building and deploying PPC campaigns.