How I Marketed My New Startup on a Budget with the Help of Social Media

By on September 3, 2019

When I started my first startup – I couldn’t afford to spend lots on advertising or other costly marketing techniques. Thankfully, I was just getting going when social media was really starting to take off – and it really helped me make a difference, without breaking the bank.

In this article, I’m going to show you how I made the most of social media in my business, and how you can too. Whether you’re just starting out in the business world or are already an established player – social media is now such a big marketing tool, you can no longer ignore it. As you’re probably already aware, many digital marketing agencies now see social media as core to their business.

Social media is a powerful marketing tool for your business

I used to think social media was just for staying in touch with friends or interacting with celebrities. While it is good for that – it’s great for marketing your business, too. Nowadays, nearly every big business has a strong social media presence – but it took a few of them a while to join the party.

One thing I’ve also noticed is that while a lot of big brands have a strong social media presence, many small businesses still don’t. Especially local bricks-and-mortar and traditional companies. These guys are making a big mistake, because social media is huge for any type of business.

When I started my business I knew that I was offering something people wanted – but I was struggling to get noticed in a competitive marketplace. I was trying to bootstrap my startup and grow organically. Quite simply, I didn’t have the money for a big marketing campaign. So if I wanted to be a success, I had to get people to know about me somehow.

Slowly but surely, I started building my social media presence. The first step was getting people to follow me. Every person that follows you is opening themselves up to further communication. This kind of interaction with both previous and potential customers used to be difficult – but now it’s easy with social media.

When someone likes or follows your brand online, they’re actually expressing a level of comfort and loyalty with you that helps spread your marketing message for you. When someone “likes” something you post – they’re telling all their friends about it. This could help your message grow virally without costing anything.

So I knew I needed followers. Here’s how I went about getting them…

How I made social media work for my business

Firstly, I wanted to make sure that every person I did business with knew about my social media profiles. I printed the information on every receipt and put up prominent posters around my premises. Importantly, on the outside of my office so people passing by would have the chance to follow us even if they didn’t know what was going on inside.

I also made sure my staff prioritized social media by mentioning it on the phone to all my clients or anyone who phoned the business.

It was all good and well getting existing customers to follow us, but if I wanted the message to spread, I needed to turn these passive followers into active and engaged ones so they could help spread the message to their friend networks.

I realized people didn’t want to be spammed with useless information – they wanted to be valued and treated with respect. I started coming up with exclusive offers and discounts that went out only to my followers. I priced them up so that I was still making a small profit margin even with the discount. So it was win-win.

I tried to be active, engaging and entertaining. While I didn’t have the creativity to create one of those overnight internet viral sensations that gets shared millions of times, I could still be as engaging as possible to keep people active and sharing. I did a couple of videos showing the personal side of my business, and I created a few contests and prize giveaways. All of these things helped my small business make a dent. Not only did my following start growing – but my sales did too. That’s when I knew I was onto a winner.

My staff were active and engaged because I’d given them a bit more responsibility in handling my social media affairs. It wasn’t something I wanted to get involved with too heavily – but it’s simple to post a couple of things a day and make sure you’re replying to your followers. Importantly, you want to deal with any complaints quickly and effectively to stop bad publicity spreading. Don’t ignore them, but offer an effective solution to their problem so they keep coming back.

Nowadays, I wouldn’t start a business without social media. It’s a hugely powerful marketing tool that you’d be foolish to ignore. Hopefully these tips work for you like they did for me.

About Terry Smith

Terry has years of experience writing about internet marketing issues and enjoys telling people how social media helped his business. He also enjoys sharing his knowledge with those new to the industry by assisting a digital marketing agency in Hong Kong, Online Marketing Gurus.
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