Are you looking for ways to market your physical retail business? But you are worried about overspending on marketing during these difficult times? Then this post is for you.
If you're on a strict budget with low brand awareness, marketing your store can feel like a huge challenge. The truth is, it's entirely possible to create an impact without spending a huge amount. There are a few tried-and-tested marketing strategies that can help you raise awareness and increase sales - without breaking the bank.
Below, we've listed five different ways to market your physical store for under £100. Yes, you read that right!
Promote your business with in-store events
Make use of your physical store space itself to market your business. An in-store event is a great way to get customers through the door and allows you to market your product to a live audience. All you need to do is display your products and offer a special discount for those who attend the event. In the current environment, be sure to do so safely and responsibly.
In terms of investment, you won't need to worry about venue hire costs as you'll be using existing space. We'd recommend spending your budget on promoting the event itself. Email your customer database, use social media, and place some posters on your store window. Distribute flyers around the area or ask local businesses whether they'd be happy to keep some.
Use your social media channels to engage with customers
Invest some time into quality social media content creation to reach out topotential new customers. Learn how to use these channels effectively, and you can extend your reach without spending much at all.
Promoting posts on Facebook and Instagram doesn't cost a huge amount. The key is to target customers in your local area because they are your actual visitors. Keep the content regular, fresh, and engaging, with striking visuals and on-brand captions. Include information about sales and new products to draw customers into the store, and run online contests to increase engagement.
Oh, and always respond to customer comments on posts to keep the conversation going!
Network with other local business owners and cross-promote each other
Connect with other small businesses located in your store's vicinity, and you could forge a mutually beneficial relationship by promoting each other to your customers. After all, you're both trying to attract the same group of people!
Do this by trading promotional flyers or giving each other shout outs on social media. If their product is compatible with yours, you could also throw events and split the budget for the event.
Focus on building genuine friendships with local business owners. Spend some time brainstorming how you could work together to market your stores within the neighborhood.
Create a loyalty program and build up your email database for marketing
Email marketing is undoubtedly one of the most cost-effective marketing strategies for small business owners.
The question is, how do you get customers to sign up for your database?
We'd recommend incentivising customers to join your email list by creating a loyalty program - you'll find that this has two major benefits. The loyalty program will encourage them to keep frequenting your store, while the email data you get at sign-up can be used to market new products and discounts.
The best thing about email marketing? It doesn't have to cost a lot if you self-manage your campaigns and use a free platform. Try HubSpot Email Marketing or Mailchimp. Their free plans provide you with all the basic features you need to create and schedule your emails.
Have an online presence and utilise SEO to get your business to the top of local search rankings
Thanks to Google and smartphones, most customers are unlikely to learn about a business without an online presence.
Even if you don't have eCommerce capability, make sure you have a website for your physical store. This could also be a simple landing page that lists your store's location and opening times. And it's free and easy to create using WordPress or SquareSpace.
To help your site rank higher in search engines, create helpful content using relevant keywords. This could be in the form of regular blog articles, which you could then share on your social media channels as well.
Ultimately, your aim should be to appear on the first page when someone searches for 'your area + your product/service'. This can take a while to happen, but it doesn't have to cost much if you can create the content and the website yourself.
Bonus Idea: Join OMG Network
We know we promised you five ideas, but we always strive to do something extra. So here is another great way to market your physical store, for free.
When you join OMG Partner Network, you get access to an easy to use platform. You can use it to let active local customers know about your in-store events, promotions, or special offers.
We also make it easy for your business to follow up with people who showed interest in your marketing. OMG Partners have access to our tools for creating and managing loyalty programs to keep those customers coming back to you.
And because we know how important having an excellent social media presence is, we are always open to collaborating with local businesses for mutually beneficial results.
If an effective and free physical store marketing is something that your business needs, be sure to get in touch with us.