You don't need a big budget to make a big splash with your marketing campaign. Utilizing just a few tricks and strategies can create a buzz on a small budget. Here are some ideas to help you get started.
1. Use Trending Social Media Hashtags
Every day, join a few trending social media hashtags. On Twitter, for example, you can log into your account and see what's trending in your country or your region. Add your voice to the mix.
But don't stop there. Make a list of hashtags that people use on the same day every week and join the fun. These hashtags are particularly popular on Instagram or Twitter. For example, cat lovers often use #WhiskersWednesdays to share photos of their cats or #WoofCrushWednesday for dogs. This works for more generic categories too, like #ThrowbackThursday, #FashionFriday, or #MondayMemories. Get inspired with this list of hashtag suggestions.
2. Request a Share for Share Promotion
Embark on a "share for a share" journey (also called "S4S" or "shoutout for shoutout.") Reach out on social media to other people in your industry and ask them to share your page in exchange for sharing theirs. You'd be surprised how often this works! This is more likely to succeed if you contact smaller or similarly sized accounts with an audience or product like yours.
3. Offer Free Products for Reviews
You can also offer free products in exchange for honest reviews. Some influencers may want a very small fee for this exchange, but typically the free item is enough. Or you can be a little more "official" and join a platform that connects you to people who want to give reviews.
4. Buy a $5 Social Media Ad
Consider testing out social media ads to gain some new followers. Most social media sites let you buy inexpensive ads or boost posts for a budget of just $5. If you do this, keep your target audience small. For example, if you're selling a hair product for young women, you might want your ad to only target women in your country ages 18-35.
5. Host a Contest Online
You don't need a huge prize to have a successful contest. Sometimes offering a free product, such as a T-shirt, can be enough to generate interest. Let your participants get more entries by commenting and sharing your post, following you and tagging other people. This strategy can generate some quick buzz.
Sometimes you can also get a company to sponsor a contest. They'll provide you a more expensive item to give away in exchange for free advertising.
6. Join Communities Related to Your Product or Service
Network, network, network — and then network some more. On social media you don't have to be intimidated by networking. Just join communities related to your product or service. If you make and sell cookies, try a Facebook group for people who like to bake. If you write articles about TV shows, then join a fan community for that show or live tweet while the show airs.
You don't have to limit yourself to traditional social media sites. Look for like-minded groups on places like Reddit, Quora, niche forums, Steemit and more. But make sure you're not just spamming your product. The key is to create connections and offer valuable insights.
7. Share High-Quality Pictures and Videos
If you share high-quality pictures or videos on your social media accounts, you'll be more likely to get attention. People love sharing posts with attractive visuals. Live videos are even better because many social networks, like Facebook and Instagram, will send notifications to your followers letting them know when a live video has started. It creates a sense of urgency.
8. Build an Email List
Encourage people to join your email list. Whether you put a link on your accounts' "About Me" page or you periodically tweet about your email list, remind people about the opportunity from time to time.
This strategy is crucial because social media sites are increasingly limiting users' organic reach in order to encourage ad buys. But if you have an email list, you don't have to worry about your messages ending up in an internet void.
9. Join Conversations
On social media everyone's talking, but sometimes it's tough to be heard. Don't merely try to be a conversation starter, find conversations that already happening and join them. You can use services like Hootsuite to monitor for specific topics, or periodically search for questions related to your product. If you offer editing services, for example, then look for people who are tweeting about needing an editor.
10. Let Your Personality and Passion Shine
Personality and passion are huge on social media. Don't be stilted and formal. Instead, use humor and authenticity and let your personality shine through. Try posts that tell stories rather than just updates about your business. Passionate posts are more likely to be read and shared.
When your business is online, it can be relatively easy to launch a marketing strategy on a low budget. A little imagination mixed with some pragmatic social media moves can help you create a buzz.