Do you have the drive to grow your small business, but you don’t have a lot of money to do it? If you think that you need deep pockets to scale up, then you’re wrong. There may be several areas in your business that you need to spend your hard-earned money on, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t think about growing your business.
With a little bit of creativity, taking little steps instead of big leaps—you can do things now that can lead to your company’s growth! Here are some strategies to help you grow your business without spending a lot of money.
Build brand awareness
We all know the power and influence of social media on today’s consumers. If you wish to grow your business, start by creating brand awareness and reputation by publishing and engaging on different social media networks like Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn. Socialable founder Lilach Bullock believes that social media plays a huge part in boosting brand awareness.
You can also post on forums where your potential audience or customers hang out. This way, you can introduce your brand and hopefully build a good reputation.
You can also speak at events and offer free seminars or webinars to connect with potential customers. Make each speaking engagement or webinar a great opportunity for you to let people know about your expertise and your company’s specialty. Prospective customers will then be able to see that they can trust you and your business.
It’s also a good idea to get your business or website listed on relevant directories. You can also try connecting with local journalists and bloggers. They can help you get the word out about your business.
Create a loyal customer base
Loyal customers will support you through thick or thin. And the best way to increase their numbers is by educating them and helping them solve their problems. To do this, you can use content marketing and curate awesome content on social media. In fact, a Business Bolt survey affirms what we have long been saying that content marketing works!
Make sure the content is focused on helping your customers and not your company. If you have the knack for writing, you can do this for free! But if you think you need to hire a writer to do content writing/curating for you, you can do so by spending just a little amount of cash.
Having an email weekly newsletter will also help you build not just an email list, but also loyal following. Through this channel, you can maintain communication with your existing and prospective subscribers/customers and nurture them by giving them value-added content.
You can also host a VIP forum where you can talk and listen to your existing clients. They will feel that you regard them as an important part of your business if you invite them to give their insights.
Leverage your current customers
Once you’ve created a loyal customer base, you can make them a huge part of your business’ expansion or growth process by asking them for reviews and referrals. If others see that your existing customers trust you and are satisfied with your service, then they will likely be interested in your brand, too. This could be the most low-cost and effective way to market and grow your business.
In return, try to go out of your way to show your customers that you care. Delight them with loyalty discounts and freebies. Even sending them a simple personalized “Thank You” card or note via email or snail mail will make them feel important and loved.
WhenIWork.com, an online employee scheduling software company do this and their new customers appreciate it. This won’t cost you a lot of money, but would mean a lot to your loyal customers. In the end, it will be good for your business.
Develop better products and services
Growing your business could mean offering something new or making your product or service better. This might sound like you’re going to have to shell out a huge amount of money, but there are free and low-cost strategies for you to do this.
You can start by getting an idea of what your competitors are doing and learn from their mistakes. Did they just launch a new product but the market didn’t receive it well? You can try to find out if their marketing strategy was off or if it wasn’t really high-time for that certain product to be introduced to the market.
Creating surveys for your customers can help you know which product or service you should improve on and what kind of new stuff you can develop. Top car company, Ford, uses surveys to get information about their customers’ experience and what they want to see in future cars.
You can also invite your loyal customers to be part of an elite group that will get first dibs on your new ideas or products. Connecting with other business owners can also help you discover new opportunities. It is a good chance for you to grow your small business.
Work with top talents
If you’re gearing up for expansion, you might need new hands and minds to help you with operations. There are loads of talent on LinkedIn and reaching out to them won’t even cost you a dime. You can also ask your current staff, existing customers, and even family and friends to help you find the right people to add to your team. This won’t cost you anything. It also allows you to put your good relationships with everyone to good use.
Growing your small business might seem difficult especially if you have limited financial resources. But there are low-cost and even free strategies that you can use to scale up. To reach a wider audience and build your brand and reputation, you can engage on social media sites and forums and take part in seminars. You can also create a loyal customer base and leverage their network. You can do these and more without spending a lot of money. Business growth need not be immediately exponential. More often than not, slow and steady growth is more sustainable!
Let our virtual assistants help you grow your small business. Learn how through our free five-hour trial!
Take a look at these blogs for our small business series:
- 10 Most Lucrative Small Business Industries
- Infographic: Low-Cost Ways to Grow Business / 10 Lucrative Small Business Industries
Pepper Virtual Assistants is a business solutions firm that specializes in virtual administrative and personal assistance, online marketing, customer support, and copywriting. We are known for reliability through our managed services, responsive client handling backed by extensive training, and rockstar virtual assistants hired for their skills and expertise.