13 Way To Promote Your Business For Free
Before the Internet, small businesses only had a few ways to market their products cheaply, through methods like printing out fliers or sponsoring little local events. Now there are all kinds of opportunities out there on the Web—you just need to know where to look.
Here are seven ways to promote your business online that won’t cost you a dime:
Embrace social media
Social media isn’t just a tool to gain exposure—it has now become a necessary time investment for every business to make. You can tie in ads and offers on your Facebook page and have a direct channel with your customers on Twitter. Networking on LinkedIn—both at the personal and company level—can be another way to help your startup.
2.Start a blog
A blog not only helps your company get its name out through followers, but is a way to connect with your consumers more directly. But remember that one of the major keys of blogging is to keep your stream updated as frequently as you can. A dormant, abandoned blog is worth nothing.
3.Put up multimedia on YouTube and Flickr
YouTube provides a free way to distribute creative promotional videos, but in order to succeed you must put up content that people want to view and are relevant to your business—a simple ad will not work. A Flickr profile can also help by giving you one place to compile all the photos for your business, and allows you to link back to your website.
4.SEO your company website
Search engine optimization cannot be underestimated in the world of constant Googling. Pick up a book or head over to an online how-to-guide on SEO and make sure your site is primed for performance on search engines.
Every time your business does something newsworthy, don’t hesitate to shoot off a press release—maybe folks will pick up on it. They’re a powerful media tool to use to help generate publicity, and having free distribution of them is a bonus. There are dozens of websites out there that you can use for your press releases, such as PRLog and 24/7 Press Release .
6.Join a relevant online community and contribute
Every niche has communities online that you can get involved in. But just signing up for a forum and posting every once in a while about your business isn’t beneficial for anyone, and will likely just annoy people. Actively contribute and build a rapport with the community, while keeping your business out of it. Passively promote your business by putting a link in your signature or mentioning it only when the context is appropriate.
7. Bing Places for Business
Second only to Google, this free business advertising platform by Microsoft, allows you to add multiple business locations, videos, photos and a whole lot more. It has a quick and easy registration process and you can even optimize your ads for various viewing platforms through Bing Places for Business.
Here’s how: Give your business a running start toward the top by signing up for Bing Places for Business.
8. Yahoo Local
Still hanging in there toward the top of the business listing ranks is Yahoo Local. Running third behind Google and Bing, you can still get a free basic listing and are allowed some very affordable premium listing options when you are ready to expand your reach or have the budget to handle it. Though not a search engine giant like it used to be, Yahoo Local is still a sold listing directory.
Here’s how: Establish your online business presence by signing up with Yahoo Local.
9. Enroll Business
This directory offers a free business listing profile to get you started and then helps your business be found by popular search engines. There are also plenty of free and premium services to help expand your presence and better market your goods and services once your budget is able to handle an added expense of advertising.
Use the three big local listing services
Registering your business with Google Places allows it to be found more easily on Google searches and it shows up on Google Maps. All you have to do is fill out the form and register, then get your business verified through their confirmation process, which can be done either with a phone call or snail mail. Yahoo! also has a big database of businesses called Yahoo! Local. It’s free, and is certainly worth the few minutes it takes to set up. Microsoft’s Bing has a similar service that’s easy to sign up for.
10.Create an Instagram
A popular contender among social media platforms, Instagram has an ever-increasing user base.If your business would benefit from a visual presence, then make sure you are dedicating time to building a strong Instagram account . Remember that it’s a visual platform , so carefully curated content that looks amazing is key.
11. Generate website traffic with Pinterest
Pinterest isn’t suitable for a lot of businesses, but can work really well for some. The platform has one of the highest conversion rates in terms of converting browsers into buyers.
You can also generate significant website traffic and find out more about what your target users love.
12. Build your network on LinkedIn
If your business is a B2B company, be sure to have a strong presence on LinkedIn . It’s also a great place for building your network. The same rules apply to LinkedIn as other social platforms – engage with relevant people and offer genuine insight.
13. Publish to Google Plus – yes, really!
Google Plus, that strange little platform that never quite hit the big time . Yet it’s still plodding along hoping that one day, something, anything will happen that propels it into social media stardom (not likely).
Still, despite the failings of Google Plus, it is still worth getting into the habit of pushing out any new content via Google Plus. After all, it’s a product of Google and if you want to climb those rankings, we suggest keeping Google sweet.