Now that Christmas is just around the corner, this is the most perfect time to turn your attention to marketing your small business. Whether you’re a products-based business looking to dramatically increase your festive period sales, or even a service-based business using the ‘down-time’ of holidays to brainstorm new and exciting ideas – you’re going to love the following tips!

The best part is that the marketing suggestions below are all tailored for small businesses who have a low (or even non-existent) budget. It’s time to get creative, have fun and prepare to reap the benefits!

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Create your own free marketing materials

Say no to pricey graphic designers and yes to designing your own marketing materials. Not only will it give your creativity a chance to shine through, helping you refine your brand’s voice, but it’s cost-effective, too (does it get any better than free)?!

Start off with some social media graphics like a cover photo for your Facebook page and work your way up. With templates for business cards, letterheads and a variety of ads all available on the Designer Toolsetyou’ll find yourself wondering when you suddenly turned into some sort of crafty, enterprising wizard.

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Host a giveaway on your social media

Giveaways and competitions give your audience something to be excited about, plus they’re also an extremely affordable option to grow your following or newsletter subscribers – when hosted correctly. You don’t need to purchase an expensive prize or even offer international shipping if you don’t have the budget for such things.

Instead, offer a prize which can be sent to the winner online, such as a voucher or exclusive discount code to use in your store. You can also add additional guidelines, such as that each entrant has to tag three of their friends in the competition post, or that every entrant must follow your account in order to have a valid entry. You can even create your contest promotion images for free using the BeFunky Designer Toolset – too easy!

Please note that it’s important to double-check what the law is regarding online giveaways and competitions in your state or country. Better to be safe than sorry!

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Host an exclusive event

The festive season gives you a great excuse to host an exclusive online event, such as offering a one-day only sale, a Twitter chat, or even a day where each purchase comes with a free gift. Not only will a special event create hype around your products or services, but it also gives buyers even more incentive to interact with your store and make a purchase!

If you have a bricks-and-mortar store, other options might include extending your opening hours or even offering fun activities on-site such as free (or even coin donation) workshops.

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Offer a behind-the-scenes look into your business

Humans are a curious bunch, so why not reach out to your fans and potential customers through offering them an exclusive glimpse into the daily life of your small business? This is another completely free marketing method, as anyone with a smart phone can snap some images or even capture a video and upload it onto a blog or social media platform.

By showing your audience who you are, what your business space looks like, and even the process of creating your products, they will feel more connected to you on a personal level. The best part? Studies have shown time and time again that when a customer connects to a brand on this level, it creates trust and trust equals more sales!

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Offer a freebie in return for email newsletter subscribers

This is the number one marketing method of successful bloggers, so you need to give it a try! Every small business should have an option for people to opt-in to their email newsletter, as this is one of the most effective methods of communication you will have with your audience (other than face-to-face of course!). If you don’t have one already, don’t fear, because MailChimp is one platform that you can use for free on their basic plan.

In order to attract email subscribers though, you’ll need to offer them something pretty special in exchange for them opting-in. Perhaps you design inspirational prints and can give one as a digital file to every subscriber for free? Or if you’re good at craft, you can always create a mini eBook featuring a few DIY tutorials. The opportunities are endless here, but if in doubt, a discount code will work like magic.

These are four of the most effective yet simple ways to successfully market your small business on a budget. If you loved this article, you’ll also enjoy reading about how to ‘Create Email & Social Media Campaigns With The Designer’.

Ready to take your marketing materials to the next level? Get started below:

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