Inexpensive marketing ideas for small business

By: Richard Michie

Marketing can be an expensive business, it’s easy to spend a lot of money on campaigns and tactics which give little return on investment. With a little planning there are lots of ways you can ensure your marketing hits the mark without spending a fortune. To help you out we’ve come up with this list of marketing ideas for small business. We hope they give you some inspiration.

  1. Make a marketing calendar
  2. Make a marketing plan
  3. Do keyword research before you blog
  4. Ensure your blogs are formatted correctly
  5. Make your images the right size for the internet
  6. Use the same name, address and phone number everywhere
  7. Fill out your social media profiles
  8. Post to social media regularly
  9. Schedule your social media posts
  10. Make your posts interesting

Make a marketing calendar

Sit down with a calendar and lay out everything which is happening in the coming 3 to 6 months, you can plan longer but that can seem daunting. Make sure you add in all the obvious events coming up; Bank holidays, Halloween, Black Friday etc. Then add all your industry events. Finally start to add in your own launches, new projects etc. The reason to begin with holidays is that it gives you a starting point and gets a blank page out of the way.

Make a marketing plan

Once you have the calendar you can begin a marketing plan. So, if you have a product launch in month 3 of our calendar you can work out when you need to send out email invites, write a blog, get new brochures written, designed and printed, when your social media should begin etc.

This part helps to ensure you can see the scale of the plan and get all your resources and finances in order.

Do keyword research before you blog

Adding regular blogs to your website is a great idea, but before you write a word carry out some simple keyword research, this will help your Search Engine Optimisation. The easiest thing to do is go to Google, type in the name of your product or service and press the space bar. Google will then show what other people have searched containing that term. Once you know what people are asking Google you can write your blogs based on that.

marketing ideas for small business

Ensure your blogs are formatted correctly

Google is a huge library and likes to index your pages in an easy format. It looks at the main words in your heading, subheadings and text. It also looks at the words you have used to identify images on your pages. Pay careful attention to these areas on your blogs.

Make your images the right size for the internet

Google wants websites to load quickly, especially as up to 90% of website traffic is via mobile phones. When you take a photo the images can be very large and high resolution which are great for printing out, but far too big to place on your website. Take the time to scale your images to the right pixel size they’ll be shown on your website and reduce the resolution down, as screens can only show so much information.

Use the same name, address and phone number everywhere

If you are running a business where people need to come and visit your premises, or you want to be found in local searches then all your contact details need to be formatted the same way wherever they appear. If your office is on Johnson Drive and it is written that way on your website make sure that you don’t write Johnson Dr. on other sites.

Google looks across the internet for addresses and checks that they match, slight differences can mean that your listing doesn’t appear as high as it could on local searches.

Fill out your social media profiles

Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn and all the others all have profile sections which need completing to ensure your page and content is found. By ensuring all your details are completed your pages will receive a boost. Ensure you have your address, contact details, services, opening times and website links added and up to date when any changes occur.

Post to social media regularly

Social media is one of the key ways you can make an impact without a huge budget. But you need to appear on a regular basis. If you are posting once a week, you won’t have much impact at all. Ensure that you are posting at least once per day, more if you can manage it, on your most important social media channel and try and do it at the same time each day to build consistency.

Schedule your social media posts

By planning your marketing content you’ll be able to work out what you should be posting when your audience is on there too, there’s no point posting when they can’t interact. That doesn’t mean you have to be online all the time to post. There are lots of free tools that enable to you post to schedule when your post are sent.

Make your posts interesting

Too many businesses post sales messages on their blogs and social media all the time. While sales messages are still important, customers turn off if constantly bombarded with them. Instead make at least 80% of your content informative, engaging, entertaining or all three. This way you are more likely to get customers to interact and ask questions, share your content and make enquiries.

We hope these tips are useful, if you’d like us to take care of your marketing for you, we’d love to have a chat. Give us a call on 0113 477 1210 or fill in the form below

Interested in speaking to The Optimists?

Right from the beginning of our time working with The Marketing Optimist, they’ve taken the time and effort to get to understand Sharp Consultancy as a business and not just a client. We’ve seen a huge increase in the effectiveness of our social media strategy, particularly on Linkedin and we’re delighted with the impact it’s had on the business.

Jamie Caulfield

Regional Director, Sharp Consultancy

It was a pleasure to work with The Marketing Optimist on this project. It felt like a true collaborative effort on the day and they made the interviewee's feel at ease whilst talking about their journey on our RISE programme. The final video was professional and engaging, we have received great feedback around the quality and creativity of the case study. Including the video in our presentation made it come to life, with real humans sharing their stories, so thank you to the Marketing Optimist!

Hannah Prole

Impact Manager, Better Connect Limited

Case Studies


Marketing for Local Government

Moresby Hall Hotel

Hotel Rebranding

Sharp Consultancy

B2B Social Media for recruitment

The Edit LDN

Managing advanced eCommerce SEO

Better Connect

Digital PR and video production for events

Tango Networks

Marketing support for a global telecoms business

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