Traditional marketing strategies have changed and evolved in the present day. It includes a dynamic blend of online, offline, and creative initiatives that can raise your startup to the forefront of your sector. To stand out from the crowd, you must be fluid and adaptable, with your finger on the pulse of rising marketing trends. Here in this article, we have listed after in-depth research the best creative marketing ideas for startups that require little money to implement.
Table of Contents
List of 36 Marketing Ideas for Startups
1. Define Your Unique Selling Proposition (USP)
Clearly articulate what makes your startup unique and why customers should choose your product or service over competitors.
2. Build a Strong Online Presence:
The first and most important marketing tool for any business is to have an online presence. Create a professional website and optimize it for search engines (SEO) to increase online visibility.
2. Start a blog
Nowadays, starting a blog is a must for your business to grow. You can use WordPress or some other platform to get you started. One can also generate additional money from your blogs. You can also write a guest post on some relevant niche blog.
3. Advertise on Facebook
This is a continuation of the building of the Facebook page idea. Advertising on Facebook is costlier but very lucrative. You can reach targeted audiences with the help of Facebook Insights. If you run a localized business, direct your Ads within a 10-15 mile radius. Facebook advertising also helps in growing the brand name, value, and loyalty.
4. Build a Referral Network
Building a powerful referral network in business is one of the most effective strategies that any size of business can have. You need to join business meetings, seminars, events, and more valuable activities where you can meet diverse business professionals and experts. You need to establish a strong connection with like-minded business people. Be reliable. Say what you do and do what you say.
5. Send Regular Emails
You can send regular emails to a group or your clients to keep them updated. These can be anything from new arrivals to deals. This helps in creating awareness around your brand. You can automate the entire process through bulk email tools that are available for free on the Internet.
6. Create a Facebook Business page
One of the most important marketing tools is to have an active Facebook page. With the power of Facebook, you will be able to reach a much larger audience. 1.20 billion people to be exact. You will also be able to gather more leads such as email IDs and contact numbers. This is also the most cost-effective idea we have for you. Building an engaging Facebook page costs 0.
7. Set up Google Adwords
Google AdWords is an online advertising platform owned and operated by Google. Compared to traditional marketing channels like TV and magazine advertising, online marketing is highly measurable. AdWords is the most measurable of online platforms. You get to show your ad to people who are already interested in your product/service. This type of targeted advertisement yields great results.
8. Selling on Online Marketplaces
You can sell online on retail marketplaces such as Amazon or Flipkart. This will give your brand exposure to a larger audience. Furthermore selling your goods will also generate further profits. It is very easy to get yourself enrolled in their program. Having a good rating on online marketplaces improves the brand name and trust.
9. Advertise in Local Newspaper
For a small business, it can be difficult for you to advertise in national newspapers. Although local magazines and newspapers offer compelling rates to go for it. Especially if your business is centric around the local population and not national or international. This method will reap the greatest benefits only if the advertisement is compelling enough.
10. Sidewalk Signs
These are again low-cost marketing strategies. Advertising on sidewalks and walls has been going on for a long time. These still are effective in reaching out to your local audience. These are super easy to make and material cost is negligible. You would still need catchy graphics or punchlines to grab the attention of the commuter.
11. Use Facebook Marketplace
This marketing idea is different from Facebook ads or creating a page. You can sell your products online but you have to sell them personally. This is great for startups looking for initial funding. Make a habit of browsing through the platform for items in your category and related categories to see how they compare to your offerings
12. Create an Active Instagram Account
Instagram is one of the fastest-growing social media platforms. Hence, having an active Instagram Account is vital for your Business. You can post pictures and videos about your product or service. The platform enables you to reach out to a much larger audience. Your goal should be to keep increasing followers to expand your reach. To do so, you should keep updating posts to your stories.
13. Create an Active Twitter handle
With over 313 million monthly active users and a young demographic to boot, Twitter is a great platform for most marketers. After creating a Twitter account you can send out Tweets whenever your company has a product being released or an upcoming event. You should also engage with your target audience and interact with them as often as you can.
14. Organize Discount and Sale
When small businesses are looking to move their sales figures, the most common approach they take is to offer a discount. One advantage is that discounts make your customers feel good. Research shows that when people receive a coupon or savings offer, they become happier and more relaxed. It could be beneficial in the long run if these positive feelings can be associated with your brand.
15. Start an Affiliate Program
Affiliate marketing is often termed as one of the best online marketing programs that are available to small businesses. There is no risk when it comes to affiliate marketing; you only pay after the results are delivered.
16. Use WhatsApp as a Marketing Tool
Presently, Whatsapp is being used by most smartphone users. You should not miss out on the opportunity to market your brand on such a platform. You can use the phone numbers of clients and customers to create Whatsapp groups. One can also create an account in the name of your brand. New deals, products, services, or gift cards can be sent through WhatsApp groups. You can also just those individually to specific contacts. Whatsapp also enables you to create interpersonal relationships with your clients. This, in turn, creates more trust and loyalty toward your brand.
17. Create a YouTube channel
YouTube is a platform that reaches 1.2 billion people. Create your channel and upload videos about your brand. You should add graphics and animation production value. This will help you grow your reputation as a brand. It also educates the customers about your business in more detail. The first thing to note is that YouTube accounts are directly linked to Google accounts. So you can either use an existing Google account to create your YouTube account, or you can set up a YouTube account from scratch and a Google account will be created for you in the process.
18. Sponsor Local Team or Band
Sponsoring a local event or team helps market your brand locally. This is unconventional as most businesses use Adwords or Facebook to market their brand locally. This marketing idea takes time to yield a result. However, sticking with local sponsorship marketing guarantees a steady flow of local customers in the long run.
19. Regular Customer Reward Program
Offering points, discounts, and special buying opportunities to regular customers shows them that you value their customs. This keeps them coming through your door more often.
You can offer cumulative discounts or create a loyalty card scheme. This increases brand loyalty and keeps a steady flow of customers for your business.
20. Text & Mail Campaigns
Texting and Mail campaigns are an excellent way to be in the minds of your customers. This is also one of the most cost-effective ideas we have for you. You can also use online messaging apps like WhatsApp or WeChat to connect with your customers. Your text and email campaigns may include offers, deals, or new arrivals. You don’t want to go overboard with it cause you don’t want to irritate your clients
21. Associate with the Local Chamber of Commerce
Try to take membership in business associations and clubs as much as possible. Chambers of Commerce is a platform where you will find business owners and professionals at plenty. Networking with them will not only give you access to key people in the industry but also an easy way of marketing your company.
22. Get Associated Online Partners
If you have a promotional tab on your Facebook page, for example, consider incorporating partners into the design and messaging. This helps in exposing your business to a broader audience. It also creates goodwill which is needed in the long run. You can ask partners to retweet (it helps if you give them an @ mention). Cross-post on Facebook to give your communications an extra boost.
23. Take Help from Influencers
Influencers can help a long way in marketing your business properly. Influencers are people who have sources at the very top level. They also generally have a very active social network with huge numbers of followers. You can collaborate with them. They help in building your brand reputation. They also help expose your business to a much wider audience.
24. List your Business on Google Places
97 per cent of consumers search for local businesses online. Another: 73 per cent of all online activity is related to local content, according to data released by Google. Google Places is free and easy to set up.
25. Use Holidays as a Promotional tool
Holiday discounts or offers can be a great way to attract new customers. This is especially effective if the business is situated near a busy street.
Make sure you have a holiday campaign strategy for both your online advertising and email marketing. These marketing channels are essential to increasing sales over the holidays.
26. Hire Local/Internet Celebrities to Talk about Your Brand
Hiring an Internet celebrity who won’t charge much for a mention is a great way to market your product. You can use their large following and support base and try to influence them. You might also try and pay a local celebrity to show off one of your products or services in public. This helps bolster brand image and recognition.
27. Collaborate with other brands
Collaborating with other brands is different from an Affiliate program. Collaborating might not involve a monetary transaction. This strategy is to improve or grow your reputation as a brand. You might not have to sell anything it’s the word of mouth that is the target. For example, tubers collaborate with other tubers to create more awareness. This also helps you in reaching out to a larger audience with the same points of interest.
28. Host a giveaway
Hosting a giveaway is almost likely to bolster your sales for some time to come. This is also a very good way to promote your business especially when you are starting a fresh one. You can host annual giveaways or do it on occasion. For example – Hosting a giveaway on the opening day of a new restaurant is a very clever marketing strategy.
29. Set up booths during fests
You can try to set up booths and stalls at functions, programs, or concerts. These are areas with high footfall and your brand will get a lot of exposure. If you can sell your product or services there then even better. People will also tend to associate your brand with happier memories.
30. Send e-cards to your clients during the festive season
Sending e-cards to your clients is a good way to be in the good books of your clients. People also associate your brand with fond times. This is a good way to build interpersonal relationships with your clients. These actions increase customer loyalty, brand value, and the faith they have in your business.
31. Customer satisfaction survey
Surveys are great for improving your brand image and brand awareness. The audience has a sense of deeper respect for your brand. This is because conducting a survey shows that you are giving your customers a top priority. This also allows you to diagnose potential problems, at an aggregate level. More importantly, it allows you to improve over time.
32. Make Cold Calls
Making cold calls to customers is one of the most traditional ways to market a product. However, the effectiveness is still very much in converting strangers into prospects. Maybe the success rate is low, but still, this is the most popular way of reaching and creating new customers.
Start a podcast in your niche to share your knowledge and build authority.
34. Guerrilla Marketing
Use unconventional and low-cost marketing tactics to create a buzz about your startup.
35. Chatbots and AI
Implement chatbots on your website to provide instant customer support and assistance.
36. Crowdfunding Campaigns
Use platforms like Kickstarter or Indiegogo to raise funds and create pre-launch buzz.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the best online marketing ideas for startups?
Some of the best online marketing ideas for startups are the following:
- Social Media Marketing
- Content Marketing
- Email Marketing
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising
- Influencer Marketing
How do I build an online community for my brand?
To build an online community, create engaging content, interact with your audience on social media, and consider starting a forum or Facebook Group centred around your niche or industry.
What are the best marketing ideas for a shoestring budget?
If you have limited funds, focus on cost-effective strategies like content marketing, social media marketing, and email marketing. Networking and word-of-mouth can also be highly effective.
How can I measure the success of my marketing efforts?
You can measure success through key performance indicators (KPIs) such as website traffic, conversion rates, customer acquisition cost, and customer lifetime value. Use tools like Google Analytics to track your online efforts.
What are the best offline marketing ideas for startups?
Here are the top 5 best offline marketing ideas for startups:
- Local Sponsorship
- Community Involvement
- Direct Mail
- Public Speaking
What is the best approach to social media marketing for a startup?
Start by defining your target audience and then choose the social media platforms that align with your audience. Post consistently, engage with your followers and use both organic and paid strategies.
What are the best free marketing ideas for startups?
Here are the top free marketing ideas for startups:
- Online Reviews and Testimonials
- Guest Blogging
- Referral Marketing
- Loyalty Programs
- Partnerships and Cross-Promotion
- Google My Business
What is the difference between content marketing and traditional advertising?
Content marketing focuses on creating valuable, informative, and entertaining content to attract and engage an audience. Traditional advertising often involves paid promotion through methods like TV or print ads.
What are the best guerrilla marketing ideas for startups?
Some of the best guerrilla marketing ideas for startups are as follows:
- Viral Marketing
- Street Art and Graffiti
- Ambush Marketing
- Sticker and Poster Campaigns
Is guerrilla marketing suitable for all businesses?
Guerrilla marketing can be highly effective, but it may not be suitable for every business. It’s often best for creative or unique brands looking to make a big impact.
How can I make the most of local marketing strategies?
For local marketing, ensure your business is listed in online directories, claim your Google My Business listing, encourage customer reviews, and participate in community events.
Is email marketing still effective in the age of social media?
Yes, email marketing remains effective. It allows you to reach a targeted audience directly, making it a powerful tool for nurturing leads and retaining customers.