June is Entrepreneurs Do It Yourself Marketing Month. Many small to medium sized businesses do most or all of their marketing in house. We all need a mix of methods and channels to leverage our marketing efforts. Below are 10 ideas that you may not have tried that you can do completely on your own or you can outsource components of it if you choose.
Why not go out on a limb. Isn’t that where the fruit is? ~Mahatma Gandhi
- Let your customers get their deal on with Groupon. Groupon, currently in more than 80 cities offers daily deals from local businesses. Each day the site offers a featured deal of the day. The deal is only valid if enough people buy it. There is no up front cost to your business, Groupon collects all the payments, issues a coupon and sends you a check minus their fee.
- Give an award. A great way to connect with your community is to recognize the efforts of others. Honor an individual or business for service to the community or give a Hero’s Award to someone who did something special. Don’t forget to send out a press release about the award. You may even be able to secure prizes from sponsors.
- Create a tips booklet. You don’t have to write a best selling book to take advantage of the written word. Tips booklets are a great way to market your business by sharing ideas. You can give the booklets away to customers and prospects or sell them. Sell single copies for digital download only and offer hard copies in bulk to organizations or businesses.
- Do a free makeover. Makeovers are not just for those in the health and beauty biz. You can makeover careers, finances, media plans and more. To add buzz, have people submit an essay or video on why they should be selected for a free makeover. Choose the winner and then chronicle the before and after. The results will stand as a testimony to your services and the contest can boost your brand visibility.
- Sponsor a local youth team. We talk a great deal about community online but offline community is equally important. This is a great way to give back and market your business.
- Host a round table. This can be a physical or virtual event. Gather local business owners together to creatively collaborate on solving a local issue. Invite your local press to moderate. Or host a virtual event with other industry leaders to provide your audience with solutions to their problems. You will establish thought leadership and by partnering with others will also gain visibility with their audience.
- Remember your current customers. Send cards to former or recent customers. Celebrate customer successes or milestones in your newsletter. Surprise a customer once per month with a free gift or discounted service.
- Do a survey and share the results in a press release. Surveys can be an effective way to generate media coverage. You can hire a company to conduct the survey for you or do it yourself using online survey tools. Get ides on questions by researching other surveys. Creative questions can make great headlines.
- Market through video. If you are not a fan of being on camera there are many other ways to use video to market your business. Do “man-on-the-street” videos asking random strangers funny questions that relate to your business. How to videos are very popular. People search online to find out how to do everything from using chopsticks to stopping the hiccups. Video is a great medium for showing others how to do something. If you have a budget you can hire a company to do an online commercial for your business.
- Share your expertise with others. Pitch on and offline publications with an article idea (be sure to research the publication and guidelines), get interviewed by others in your areas of expertise, speak at workshops, events or even webinars. There is no shortage of opportunities if you are willing to do the work.
Integrating new ideas and approaches into your marketing strategies is a great way to get your brand in front of a different audience and revitalize your brand. Develop a plan and execute it consistently.
- Tips Booklets (Affiliate link)
- Co-op Online Commercials
- Online surveys – Zommerang, Survey Monkey
- Low cost printing services
Great ideas, thanks a million for sharing!
The survey and video marketing are poking me in the face as I read this article. I must work on them, if only to stop the poking.
Karen Swim says
Hi Sabine! I am so glad I could provide some ideas. I love the paint analogy, and will now proudly share that example with a hat tip to you. I have a brother who is a contractor and have seen the difference between professionals and those who think anyone can paint. Thanks Saline, for the comment and insight!
Sabine McElrath says
Thanks for sharing some great ideas! Love number 4 and think I will implement that to highlight my FacebookLift offering.
Your picture in this post really made me laugh too. I use paint in my analogy of social media. Platforms like Facebook and Twitter have such low barriers to entry and are deceptively easy for anyone to use, much like paint.
You can give a gallon of paint and a brush to a 3 year old and get results, but when I build a house, I always hire a professional to apply those easy-to-use products!
Thanks again for a great post!