Starting up your own business can be a stressful process, with business plans, accounts, company registration and loads of time consuming administrative tasks that seem never-ending. Then there is marketing, which can be as big or small a task as you want it to be.
However, your marketing strategy will have a huge impact on the success of your business, so it is definitely worth investing a lot of effort into.
How much to invest in your marketing strategy.
If you’re not sure how much investment you should put into marketing your business, then leading business website Entrepreneur.com recommends that new companies (less than one year old) invest between 12-20% of their projected revenue on marketing. Whilst this might seem like a lot, this is because the initial marketing needs to get your brand out there for the very first time. For established companies, they recommend between 6-12% of your budget is spent on marketing.
Keep costs to a minimum.
There are ways that you can try and keep costs down, depending on your own skillset or any skills that you already have within your company, you can take on some of the marketing work yourself. If you have an understanding of website development and content management then you might want to set up your own website rather than hire the costly services of a web developer. Sites like WordPress and Wix offer easy to build website packages that can save you a lot of outlay.
Use free/cheap email templates.
Equally, if you have knowledge of email marketing, simple campaigns can be built through free or cheap services like MailChimp, where they provide templates to make your emails look professional.
Research the latest marketing trends.
If you are planning to take on a lot of the marketing work yourself, you will need to do some research if its all new to you. Don’t get carried away sending bulk emails to thousands of people and then wonder why nobody responded. There are techniques and methods that you need to be aware of that will ensure your emails are more effective, for example using Call to Action content and using segmentation email marketing.
A good way to keep up to date with the latest marketing news and trends is to follow marketing and business experts such as Forbes. You might also find some useful groups on sites like LinkedIn that publish articles and discussion threads that will help you to understand the latest marketing topics. Online tutorials are another good way of picking up marketing skills and tips. Some sites ask for subscription fees but there are plenty of free resources too.
Marketing your business can be a scary prospect but if you are prepared to spend some time and effort in getting to grips with it, you can save yourself a lot of money and drive some high quality leads that make your investment very worthwhile over the long term.