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Four Free Marketing Methods

Aug 17, 2007
Every successful entrepreneur knows that the most important part of any business plan is the marketing strategy. Too many would-be business owners get so caught up in product development that they overlook the importance of how that product is going to get into the hands of consumers. The question investors ask budding business owners is what's your distribution? which is a way of asking how will you market this?

In the 21st century we have so many different means of communication available to us that it is overwhelming at times to try to choose which medium will best serve your business. People are hit by marketing messages 24/7 and tune out over 95% of what they see or hear. More money is wasted on bad marketing strategies than almost any other part of business, so for young start-ups, it's best to test with free marketing methods.

One free method of marketing is to affiliate yourself with a business network such as your local chamber of commerce. When there are events, you can share your business cards and brochures with all the other members present. They in turn will likely give you their information, but you may be just what one of these people is looking for or find a partner to joint venture with that will give you leverage to get more exposure for your product.

A second free method of marketing is to write and submit press releases. The internet has made this method so easy, cheap, and fast that offline papers often turn to the online databases to find news. The announcement of your new product and how it solves a problem is definitely newsworthy. Never write them to sound like commercials, it should always sound like news or it won't get published. Once you've written it, you can send it to any of the many online press publication sites, such as OpenPR.com.

Free marketing method number three is to participate in online forums and utilize your signature line to talk about your business. Never openly talk about your business in a forum unless it's to directly answer somebody else's question, and never post garbage like 'me too' just to get your signature seen in a thread. Contribute good quality and choose a forum that interests potential clients so you'll know you've got a winner.

A fourth and one of the best ways to market for free, is to simply offer some free incentive for people to try your product. This can be entry into drawings for hot prizes, gifts that bear your company logo or message of some sort, free memberships, consultations, information, or bonus additional products with purchase.

Giving things away for free tends to enhance the perceived value of what you offer while at the same time winning the trust of your clients. As people see your interest in delivering real benefits and not just taking their money, you will see more buyers and more frequent action from the same buyers.

Marketing doesn't have to cost big money, often the best solutions are very inexpensive. Test your strategies for free as often as you can until you are sure of the market's response, so that once you know how much it costs you to get a buyer you can spend that amount over and over while always gaining more and more profits.
About the Author
Tyler Ellison is a successful entrepreneur who teaches automated marketing strategies at his site and encourages others to join the community at Little Guy Co-Op.
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