How to market when you're totally broke. - Kristen Kalp

How to market when you’re totally broke.

There are infinite numbers of ways to spend money on marketing, but sometimes you’ve only got a few hours and no dollars to spend.

Here are easy ways to market your business that cost less than $10 each.

Kindly remember that with NO money, you’re going to have to rely on your talents and negotiation skills.  You may have to barter or give something away to get what you need.  Trying to get yourself hundreds of postcards or other hard goods with $0 and no willingness to earn them simply won’t work.  But trading some of your work for a booth at a conference or trade show?  Totally doable.

1.) Leave your business cards on three community bulletin boards.

Can’t think of anywhere?  Starbucks, the YMCA, the gym, your coffee shop, your laundromat, your deli, and your hairdressers’ work station.  You know you’ve heard this before, but how often do you get your cards into other businesses?  Yah.  It’s been too long.  Hop to it!

2.) Buy a local businessperson coffee.

Meet with or without an agenda, but get to know the people who have businesses in the same vicinity as yours.  Chat about ways to cross promote your work, ask for introductions to other local peeps you might like, or have a glass of wine instead and simply commiserate.

3.) Use social media platforms to remind clients that you exist.

Create a promotion and remind people about it on all your social media platforms twice a day for 3 days in a row.  That sort of stick-to-it-ness typically yields results quickly.  (Create a call-to-action for your next newsletter if you want to earn extra points.)

4.) Offer your work to a local businessperson in exchange for an introduction to X.

X is a person with connections who’s been around the community FOREVER.  Of course, X is busy and a cold call will get you nowhere.   Garner an introduction to X with your work and then see if you can make business cross-promotion happen.

5.) Send your top three clients vouchers for a free product/service to give to a friend.

They’ll give it to their best friend, who’s probably like-minded and like-pocketed.  Worst case scenario, you do three freebies and have fabulous fodder for social media.  Best case scenario, one of your clients has a best friend who’s a lovely billionaire.

6.) Queue up 10 posts of your favorite work on your blog.  Post one per day with the story behind it for the next ten days.

Blogging regularly increases readership, which increases Google juice, which increases the number of eyeballs on your work.  Just keep blogging.

7.) Send a letter to your favorite client ‘just because.’

Your most loyal clients are more likely to keep the referrals rolling in when you keep them happy and remain at the forefront of their thoughts.

8.) Send an e-mail full of helpful tips/articles/links to your client e-mail list, and add your latest promo at the end.

Don’t have an e-mail publishing service?  Mad Mimi is FREE if your list isn’t too large.

9.) Refer jobs that aren’t a perfect fit for your business to other professionals.  They’ll return the favor.

10.) Create a marketing plan for the next six months.  Goals cost absolutely nothing to create!

Jot down one goal per month, complete with the dollar amount it will take to make that goal happen.  Then add the estimated $ amount to your budget and make it happen!

P.S.  Sell more services right this instant.

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