Marketing is becoming increasingly more digital. Magazine pages are being turned into interactive ads and billboards are getting the same treatment.
British Airways, for example, designed a billboard that tracked their planes flying overhead, while relief organisation Misereor combined visual animation and a call to action to raise awareness and money for their cause.
One cannot help but marvel at these exceptional examples of creativity, but you could be left feeling a bit out the digital loop if you’re running a small business on an even smaller budget.
After all, how are you supposed to compete, not necessarily with big brands, but any competitor that can afford to create marketing that moves, shakes and flashes?
You might think it’s not possible, but it most certainly is. The answer is three-fold and the last point could surprise you:
Harness social media
Using social media to market your business lets you step into the digital marketing world without having to fork out thousands. You can do it free if you do it yourself or make it a function of the business, or outsource it to an individual or agency if the funds are available.
To make social media work for you, you’d need to marry the type of business you’re running with the best social medial channel for it. A B2b business, for example, would benefit most from LinkedIn, but not necessarily from Twitter or even Facebook.
There is a high probability that you would be able to find a business in your city or town that complements yours. Find them and approach them with a proposal to work together on an event that would get the word out about both your companies.
The most obvious solution would be an event, like a charity run. Hosting an industry talk or expo is another option, while monthly meet-ups for industry leaders is worth investigating too.
Invest in ‘old school’ signage
Marketing methods may be more innovative than before, but more traditional advertising, like vehicle wraps and banners definitely still have their place in the mix. The trick is to decide what the goal of your marketing campaign is and to then pick the best way to achieve it.
For instance, a great way to create brand awareness would be branded merchandise that you give to customers. This could be bags, t-shirts, or anything else that the person will carry with them on a regular basis.
Once you’ve decided how the goal should be chased, enlist a company that does signage in Johannesburg, Cape Town or any other city around the country to help you design memorable marketing material.
Do it right and you’ll only have to spend once to get an excellent return on your investment.