As we head into the second half of the year and budgets show signs of wearing, it can be easy to fall into the trap of thinking you need to cut back on marketing to reduce costs.
But as seasonal campaigns begin to ramp up and the nation begins to spend, now really isn’t the time to cut corners.
If you’re stuck between ambitious plans and a lack of cash, don’t worry, we’ve got 3 top tips to help make your marketing budget go further.
Get to know Google AdWords
As content marketing still reigns supreme, marketers are often keen to rely on organic search and SEO to boost their reach.
Not only does organic search have the huge advantage of being free, there is also a wealth of advice available online to help build content tailored to boosting visibility and traffic (like this useful infographic from Business2Community).
However, a recent article by entrepreneur.com has argued that in fact Google AdWords should not be overlooked simply because it has some cost involved.
Scott Langdon, entrepreneur.com contributor and managing partner of US-based Higher Visibility, argues that ‘Google AdWords is by far one of the best ways to spend marketing dollars.’
Langdon argues that using AdWords you can quickly build new leads and gain good insights into your audience. With this information you can begin to create a strong picture of what is and isn’t working in your marketing strategy, and importantly direct your spending accordingly.
Focus your efforts
While there are obvious advantages to testing new marketing strategies and exploring new platforms, at some point you need to focus your efforts.
Just as AdWords can give you an indication of what is working and what isn’t, it is also important for you to be constantly monitoring your organisation’s progress and focusing your efforts on what works best.
For the hugely influential AllBusiness, an online resource for small businesses and entrepreneurs, this should be seen as ‘trimming the fat’.
It is suggested that in scrutinising your ROI ‘your main goal […] is to trim the fat, ceasing investments into strategies where you aren’t seeing a positive return, or at least a promising early start.’
When your budget is tight this can be a great way of making the money you do invest go further, improving your efficiency and adding clarity to your key aims.
Although sometimes creating something viral can be as much about luck and timing as the content you create, it still remains a cost effective way to get your brand out there and make audiences sit up and take note.
In another entrepreneur.com article it is argued that creating something like a viral video enables you to get noticed quickly and provides a platform on which to build future success.
A good example of how video can work wonders for your marketing without costing the earth is the success of Fatherly. At only a year old, this online resource for millennial Dads has enjoyed phenomenal growth since its inception, part of which it owes to conquering the viral world.
According to Digiday UK, Fatherly has used its viral videos ‘to grow not just its presence on the social network, but its email subscriber base’ with recent figures showing that of its ‘250,000 email subscribers, more than 40,000 have come from Facebook video viewers.’
By using an eclectic mix of amateur footage, user submissions and product footage Fatherly has cleverly built a huge network around its content, without spending vast sums on filming.
As these examples show, with a little thought and a clear goal in mind it is entirely possible to create a winning marketing strategy, without blowing your budget. By learning clever tips and tricks from those who have succeeded and thinking outside the box, any organisation can bring a spark to their strategy while still watching their spending.