Social media has become the go-to for online marketing for a number of reasons, but primarily because it can cost you virtually nothing. Social media has become so infused with our lives that marketing campaigns can just get lost in the great clutter on the web. So, that brings me to ask you a question – how can you reach people without social media? That’s right, no likes, shares or retweets. Do you remember how we used to do it in the good old days?
- Ambassador Programs
Recruit some college students to be campus ambassadors. They serve as representation of your brand and can spread the word in their immediate community. Establish a kind of points-reward system so that for doing things like giving presentations, they can get reimbursed towards college credits. If you realize that there are particular communities that you do better in, there is no harm in bulking up. In the end, it costs you almost nothing – just some paperwork with the university.
No, I don’t believe that blogging is social media. I do however believe that bloggers are how you get your first real customers that aren’t your friends and family. Find blogs that match your target audience and send them a pitch for collaboration. You might have to give them some sort of freebie or pay a small fee to be featured. Ask the blogger if they will host a giveaway on their website by collecting email entries that you can later add to your newsletter.
If you have an industry-related topic that you can write about, do it. Send it off to blogs and websites that want content and ask them to include your bio and hyperlink to your business website. Most of the time, you’ll be doing this for free, but when you gain at least one new customer, it is worth it. It will also help your credentials and SEO.
The same topics that you can write about can also be made into a great presentation. Businesses, schools, conferences and organization are always in need for speakers to inspire their audience. Show your expertise and use your business as an example of a lesson or motivation. Make sure to bring something with your business information on it for attendees as they leave at the end of the program.
- Trade Shows
They can be a little expensive depending on the ones you attend, but the return can be worth it. The advantage at trade shows are the relationships that you can build with your consumers and other brands. See if you can attend any trade shows in your industry as an exhibitor. If the costs are too much, then go as an attendee and network as much as you can.
See, marketing does exist outside of social media – don’t forget about these great channels to engage in.