Start-up businesses and small companies have limited resources for publicity. While social media and blogs are the newest ways publicity can be generated on a minimal budget, these can require a consistent time commitment to be effective and successful. If you are not sure you have time each week in your schedule to launch a blog or social media campaign, you can do a few things that can be a “one time” time commitment that you can do from time to time as your schedule permits. For example, you can write a press release, an article for a local print or online publication, a guest blog or industry newsletter or even an op-ed (editorial opinion) piece on a topic that interests you or your potential clients. You can host a special event or be a guest speaker at an event.
It is also important to solicit and use client testimonials. The positive experience of actual clients is a powerful message to prospective clients considering trying out your product or services. This is advertising that “money can’t buy.”
It is also necessary to manage your online presence. You should be sure people can find you by submitting your website to major indexing websites, directories and search engines. “Claim your listing” if a website offers a free listing and use it to maximize your online visibility.
All of these suggestions require some level of time commitment. If you cannot afford to pay someone to handle marketing for you, then you will need to make the time to manage it yourself. You will need to sort out your priorities and determine where your efforts will be most rewarded – what action(s) will reach out to the type and number of clients you want. The hope is that this time investment will yield long-term results that may allow you to hire the right person or team to take your marketing strategy to the next level.