How to get the biggest bang for your marketing buck

There’s a saying: don’t put all your eggs into one basket. It pays to be diverse in your marketing plan, especially when it comes to marketing a small business without a big budget.

These days it takes more than five touches to close a sale. People want you to work for their dollar and that means taking the time to build trust and connection. This means they have to see your messages more than once. If you are only using one marketing tool, with the same message, your audience will start to ignore it. Your marketing plan has to have a back bone, a real strategy with a firm objective.

The challenge for many small businesses with a little or no marketing budget, is they try something for a few weeks and give up, losing out on that connection building opportunity. Marketing takes time. People do not buy from brands they don’t know, like and trust.

You should take time to analyse the cost per lead with any marketing strategy used. You have to bear in mind the cost of marketing, weighing it up against your ROI. One of the more expensive marketing options is print. Not everyone can afford to do print; the cost is prohibitive for a lot of people.

Our agency works with a business who regularly was using print. Recently, over a month, they’d spent $70,000 on print advertising and only got 10 leads from that campaign. That’s $7000 per lead. We recommended that they do a targeted Facebook campaign with a $15,000 spend, the following month. From that, they got 200 leads at $75 per lead.

It is vital to make sure the specialist employed to the do the job has runs on the board. If you are going to use a specialist to do your marketing, make sure they understand the front and back end. The front end is just as important – you have to take the time to attract with a strong message and offer and cut through the noise.

Five activities to add to your marketing plan:

1. Facebook advertising – organic reach is harder and harder to get so consider paying to get in front of your audience. But don’t waste money on boosting posts, invest in taking the time to target your audience so you get a better ROI.

2. PR – having your story featured in the media is better than any paid advertising because it is earned media, nothing says third-party credibility than having a journalist cover your story.

3. Blogging – helps with your Google rankings especially if you invest in keyword research. Prospective clients want to see you are adding value to them and blogging is a great way to share your knowledge and expertise – like a try before you buy.

4. Video – it is easy now to dismiss the written word but if you back up your blogging with video content, not only are you putting a face to a name, you are also improving your ranking on Google.

5. Automation – who has time to do everything in business? Not you. Not with all the things you have to do. By automating your social media, you will save a lot of time and be more consistent with your messages.

Phoebe Wright, Whitespace Marketing

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