Good advertising puts the right marketing message in front of the right people at the right time. Although some advertising options can be costly, if advertising is right for your business there are many cost-effective options that can be considered.

Digital advertising

  1. Google AdWords

This is an online advertising service developed by Google where you pay to display text-based adverts or graphic / video display ads. Based on cookies, and keywords you have identified during the set-up phase, your advert will appear when someone is actively searching for a key term that is relevant to your business, product or service.

See also: Five free forms of marketing

It is designed so that you only pay when visitors click to visit your website or call your business and is an online resource that can cater for all scales of budget.

If managed well, Google AdWords is a worthwhile advertising channel to consider.

  1. Social media advertising

Put simply, social media advertising is any kind of paid content on a social media platform.

It is thought that Facebook is now one of the biggest players in digital advertising, with the likes of Twitter and Snap Chat not far behind, all the digital platforms offer a very high return on investment.

See also: Which social media platforms should your business be on

Again, paid for social media content doesn’t have to cost the earth, a spend of £25.00 a week can be a cost-effective way of reaching your target demographic. Campaigns can also be set up to help you achieve your social media goals, whether that’s increasing followers or targeting a certain type of person, it’s all possible with a small marketing budget.

  1. Cultivate bloggers

Engaging with influential bloggers within your sector is another cost-effective advertising method to consider. Although there is a risk involved that the endorsement may not be the way you would like, and the plug may be very subtle, it’s another potential way of increasing brand presence in front of a key target audience.

Whether you’re offering a product or service or running an attraction, the blog sphere is taking off, and it’s likely there are bloggers out there who you could approach and build a relationship with.

Traditional advertising

  1. Open days

Whether you are starting or growing a business holding open days, that are free to attend, are a great way to engage with the local audience, build relationships and increase brand awareness. These do not need to cost the earth, but they are a great opportunity to showcase your business.

See also: The key steps to developing a successful digital strategy

While you have an engaged audience in front of you, make sure you make the most of the opportunity by considering:

  • Running workshops that people can get involved in to showcase what you have to offer
  • Involving other local businesses, such as food or drink producers. If you can help them, you never know when they may return the favour
  • Capturing data from people who have attended so you can follow up with these people and start to build your e-mail marketing database
  1. Branded merchandise

Whether it’s your staff wearing branded clothing, or you are giving away branded merchandise at events, although it can be a little gimmicky, it’s a simple and cost-effective way of increasing brand awareness.

  1. Local sponsorship

Sponsoring local events is a great way to increase your brand awareness within the local area. The more you can be in front of people the more they will begin to recognise your brand and what you have to offer.

Visibility at events may stimulate conversation and word of mouth marketing still has a big role to play in the world we live in. Don’t forget the power of peer to peer conversations.

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