Advertising is one of the largest portions of a business’s budget. The constant competition between other businesses to drive customers through the door can lead to price wars while marketing. For many businesses, a large advertising budget just isn’t feasible. Luckily, there are many ways for a business to advertise for free. These free advertising methods are a mixture between traditional offline methods and new ways to use the web for marketing.
The following are a collection of guides to free advertising methods.
Free Advertising Method #1: Article Marketing
Article marketing is utilizing articles on the web and print to drive traffic and customers to your business. Print and online advertising can be very costly but the wonder of article marketing is that you’re providing valuable content for free and in return gain free marketing.
To break it down, the two best ways to gain free advertising through article marketing is to:
Write articles and submit them to article submission sites
Write articles and submit them to local publications
The first free method, article submission websites, details writing great content and sharing them on websites such as eZineArticles, GoArticles and the countless others. This free advertising method is very powerful as it works the same as a soft pitch. You warm up each potential customer with great information and convince them to come check out your own business which and lead to a great sale.
The second method, writing for local publications, can also be equally beneficial. Local magazines and newspapers are always on the lookout for someone to give an “inside view” of different areas of business. Contact the editors of these local publications and offer to write articles, for free, but in return be able to mention your business.
Free Advertising Method #2: Blogging
Blogging is one of the best and easiest ways to advertise for free. Much like article marketing, instead of going off to another website to submit content, you’ll be writing content right on your business’s blog. As search engines spider and index each new post, organic traffic will begin to flow to your website.
The key to gaining free advertising with blogging is to write search engine friendly posts which get picked up and rank high within search results. SEO entails researching keywords people are searching on, creating great content and building backlinks to help increase the authority of each new post.
A way to take your blogging offline is to print out each post and give it to those that are interested. If you provide great information, people will remember you and may come visit your business.
Case in point: the more posts you write, the more chances you can drive free traffic to your website.
Free Advertising Method #3: Social Media
Social media websites such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube can be a treasure trove of free advertising methods. Social media is free to all and only requires a few minutes to setup each account.
To break this down further, consider advertising for fee on these sites using these tactics:
Use Facebook to start a fan page or group. Invite friends and continue to promote your page to others. As you accumulate friends on Facebook, each new link that you drop onto the wall can help drive up traffic and customers to your business.
With Twitter, the conversation is always going. It’s bad practice to only talk about your business; the best approach is a mixture of helpful and informational messages in combination to linking back to your business website. Even better, if you write articles or blog you already have all the content you need to share.
With YouTube, your business can create videos on the fly to display helpful how-to’s and reviews which others may find helpful enough that they visit your business. With over a billion videos watched each day, YouTube is one of the best ways to use social media as a free advertising method.
In all, social media is the cheapest way to advertise for free online. Unlike creating content, a simple tweet, wall post or video can created very quickly – time is money!
Free Advertising Method #4: Local search
Local search is a rather new addition to search engines such as Google and Yahoo. Because the job of search engines is to give the best information to its users, when a person types in your niche business, if listed, you will appear in search results.
The reason why local search has become so popular is that people often want to find out about a business locally and not half way across the world which ranks well for their keywords.
One more thing: local search is absolutely free. Local search takes a few hours to setup but it can be the deciding factor when advertising which directly translates to your business’s success.
Free Advertising Method #5: Online and offline classifieds
Craigslist, by far, takes the cake for free online classifieds. Craigslist is very extensive, covering many cities all around the world.
Better yet, creating an ad to place on Craigslist will only take a few minutes but once up there people that are browsing throughout the site can stumble upon your advertisement.
There are also many local publications which will display your classifieds for free – you could even go to the extent of advertising on classified ad radio shows.
Free Advertising Method #6: Email
Email is a quick and easy way to advertise your business. Start collecting emails now so at a later point you can send out an advertisement for your business. Although you shouldn’t push your business hard and need to respect the privacy of each email, it can still be a great (and free) method to advertise your business.
Throughout these guides, you have learned some of the methods used to advertise for free. Unlike other businesses, cutting out advertising in the budget will help reduce the expensive overhead of running a business. Additionally, striving for free advertising places each business owner into a smart and conscious mindset which always tries to evolve and expand their business without burning out of cash.