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The Best Things In Life Are Free

I don’t blog here very often, I usually wait until I’ve had a flash of inspiration or have something I really want to share. Today I read a brilliant post by Ivan Walsh on using blog comments effectively. I really learned something from the post, enjoyed the writing style and felt an overwhelming urge to give a little something in return. You know that feeling? Where you feel like you’ve really gained so you want to share the wealth.

So, I thought to myself what can people use and get value from? What makes people happy? The answer: saving dosh! This blog post therefore is an overview of some low cost marketing tips that get results adapted from our Tiny Pocket Marketing workshop.

Start your own Awards

It doesn’t have to be a costly exercise. For example, you could give a ‘Customer of the Year’ award for the customer who uses your product/service in the best way. The award could consist of a free bundle of your products/services. If you wanted to enhance the prize you could approach a non-competitive business to co-sponsor the award (it’s win-win they’ll benefit from publicity too). This will give you publicity and will send the message that your business gives back. By the same token you should absolutely enter your business in any relevant awards-even making the shortlist is a good news story!

Get your face out and about

People do business with people so it is important that you get out and meet people regularly. Profile your customers so you know what they look like. Then find out where people who look like your customer profile go and follow the profile. Attend meetings where you will have an opportunity to meet these people. This may be a Chamber event or a conference, it may be a trade show or it may be a BNI event, the point is to find out where your customers and prospects go and meet them there. Gather business cards and begin to phone and email to follow up with a one to one over coffee. Do this immediately while you are still fresh in their mind. If they cannot use your services, ask them if they know of someone who can and get their contact information. Be helpful, is there anything you can do for them? That will make asking for a referral a lot easier.

Leave business cards

If you’re staying in a hotel, leave some cards,  if you’re in your local barber/beauticians/hairdressers/gym ask if you can leave some cards. Target related businesses and ask can you leave some cards and take some of theirs in return. Go to your local library and leave some cards near the section for your business. We do it and it works!

You could also celebrate a wacky holiday. Look at the success of Arthur Guinness Day if you doubt me on this!  You can invite all your customers to celebrate a day with you that is in some way related to your business. Because it’s different and newsworthy you should aim to get publicity with a press release and photo. So, for example, if you run an a cafe you could celebrate National Donut Day or if you run a beauty shop you could celebrate National Soft Skin Day, you get the idea! This is a website with some really different holidays that might inspire you

Get your customers involved

You can do things like product of the week/month, where your customers choose their favourite product and in return you put it on special for the week/month. The customer then features in your promotional material. As well as creating a buzz, it gives you credible testimonials that prospects and other customers can relate to.

Do you have any other low cost ideas that have worked for you? I’d love to hear them!

Passion for Creative is a full service marketing agency based in Wateford. We provide a full range of services, from graphic design to training, from copywriting to advertising, from strategy to mentoring, and from from web design to branding. We help businesses to get more customers and to make the most of the customers that they have. Dare to be different and do it with Passion

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  • Good post Margaret. Like the idea of the Award. If it’s done well, would certainly be a catchy and entertaining story.

  • Hi Margaret, I like the sounds of National Donut Day! What I really admire about your advice is that it should/will inspire creativity in businesses & business people. Thanks for sharing, Niall

  • Facundo

    There’s probably room for a “most demanding” client or something like that too. Could be a great way to ask a client to take it easier the following year…

  • Hi Margaret,

    I like the idea of asking your readers to give their input as it gets them more involved. It also helps reward folks who help out on a regular basis.


  • Hi Margaret, great post! I love the idea baout getting customers involved. It just makes sense since they’re the ones generating sales. Plus, it would make them feel that the business values their customers. Very nice.

  • Lorna

    Great ideas, I have done the product of the month before and asked people’s opinions but your ideas here give me ideas on how to stretch it further

  • Anonymous

    Great ideas! Seems like a good way to keep one’s sense of humour and play alive as sometimes it seems like we have to serious all of the time in business. A lot of people I know (myself included) love to send cards out at the new year or the first day of spring to celebrate growth and possibility. A small act that gets your information in front of clients and they appreciate the handwritten attention.

  • Anonymous

    I agree Ivan, it helps to make people feel special and let’s face it we all want to feel special !

  • Anonymous

    I love it Elli, it’s thoughtful and personal and costs next to nothing.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks! Let me know how you get on Lorna.

  • Anonymous

    Thanks Marie

  • Anonymous

    LMAO brilliant Facundo don’t know if anyone would be nominating themselves though 🙂

  • Anonymous

    Thanks Niall

  • Anonymous

    Cheers Fred- you should try it! Hope all’s going great for you since your big move

  • Doug Hazel

    Thanks Margaret, really appreciate the impact of your suggestions – they’re more than just ideas.

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