As a small business owner in Dubai you know the value of time and money all too well, hence making sure you maximize every dollar of budget, every ounce of effort and every minute of time.
An effective marketing strategy is crucial to efficiently growing revenue and minimizing wasted resources. If you can maintain focus, understand your customers and your strengths, simplify your approach and maximize efficiency, you can find success with less.
If funds are tight at the moment, here are 5 tips for marketing on a shoestring budget so you can see strong results without the massive price tag:
- Focus, focus, focus
- Stay engaged with your customers
- Great content is key
- Everyone loves discounts
- Grow your community
Well-targeted online advertising is the most cost effective option for most small businesses in Dubai. But if you don’t understand your targeting options or if your net is cast too wide, you can blow through your budget without creating value. The biggest value comes when you can find opportunities your competitors are undervaluing, where demand is lower than it should be, and the clicks, or impressions, are relatively cheap. Rather than copying the strategy of your larger competitors, find the opportunities that are more precise with smart use of keywords and by targeting less obvious demographics.
Stay on-message, with your best message. Make it clear what you are offering that the competition is not. Be results oriented, set your KPIs before you spend any money and keep close watch on your results. Think in terms of high-impact messages that are clear and succinct.
Engagement is super crucial to maintaining your customer base. The dollars you spend attempting to gain new customers will far exceed the ones you spend to keep them, so you need to make sure you look after your existing customers. Use e-mail and social media to enable a regular flow of communication and preserve the existing link with your patrons.
What you must remember is that maintaining a relationship with your customers requires finesse. You know the old saying, familiarity breeds contempt. Find that balance between being overwhelming and being effective. Here’s a tip. The more helpful, professional and informative your communications are, the better they will be received. Every communication shouldn’t be an outright sales pitch.
Content marketing is still one of the most reliable and cost-effective methods of marketing for small businesses, and it’s a solid choice for those who are trying to eke maximum value out of a shoestring budget. Stand-out content is a surefire route to higher sales conversions – but this requires a solid content strategy, something which can be intimidating at first.
Simply creating content with no real thought or goal behind it is akin to casting too wide a net with your advertising dollars. Again, you need to be focused to get the most out of a smaller marketing pot.
Prior to any content creation efforts, research how to reach your target audience. Don’t assume you’re already aware of exactly who your target demographics are. Consider conducting market research to find what specific keywords they use to describe your product, what they find compelling about your product and what related topics interest them.
Coupons leverage the eternal fondness most people have for saving money and getting a deal. As such, offering coupons has been a powerful way for brands to attract new customers for many years. Make this work for you by investigating platforms that can distribute your coupon to a large number of people for a small cost.
Once you’re committed to offering business coupons, you need to have a plan in place to convert those trying your business into long term customers. Talk to your new customers as appropriate, and find out what you can about what they want as a customer. Which aspects of your business do they love? Are there any impediments to them becoming a long term customer? The free trial is another useful tool in the penny marketer’s chest.
Your best marketing assets are the satisfied folks you’ve served before. They will work cheaply on your behalf if you treat them right. Try offering a free month of service or product discounts in exchange for referrals. In many cases, the act of giving the reward itself is more meaningful to your existing customers than its value. In other words, customers value being appreciated.
Networking is one of the most powerful things you can do for your business. It can also be one of the most time consuming. When you can persuade your existing customers to take up the cause of promoting your business, the growth can be exponential.