Budget Marketing – How to get the best bang for your buck when you’re just starting out

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When I made the decision to start my own business, one of the first lessons I learnt was how to promote my services on a minimal to non-existent budget! Coming from a role as Marketing Manager for a Top 100 law firm, this was a steep learning curve for me as I was used to managing and supporting a hectic marketing schedule with a sizeable budget. Here, I am presenting to you my top budget marketing tips.

Now, here are some of my top marketing tips. I use these to ensure I gain the most marketing effort for every penny spent, for both my own business and my clients.

Take some time to plan

When marketing isn’t your core role it can often be left as a task for a spare five minutes. Take time to plan what you would like to achieve along with the budget, tools and resource you have. This will save you time in the long run. Try drafting a handful of key objectives, how you will measure these and a plan for delivering them each week or month.

Audience – how do you hold your data?

When creating marketing plans, take some time to consider your audience. Who do you want to be listening to your marketing? How do they listen? Emails, social or word of mouth marketing?

Try utilising a CRM or database system to hold contact information. Many allow you to tag them in different lists to easily tailor your marketing to a specific set of contacts. For example existing customers, potential new customers or those that you met at a specific event.

Try Capsule CRM or Zoho. Both offer a free version and integrate with other systems such as email marketing and accounts software.

Website – the core to your budget marketing

Your website is central to any marketing you undertake, is yours the best it can be? Consider this in your planning. Do you know what you want your website to be doing for you? Ideally it should be working as a virtual sales person, converting visitors to leads, either via a web form, call or online purchase.

Try systems such as WordPress or Wix. Also, remember to monitor its effectiveness with an analytics tools such as Google Analytics.

Learn some new skills – and find the tools to help you!

There are hundreds of free online tools available for marketing. These can support you in your marketing that you can turn to before instructing a designer or consultant that will charge you an hourly rate. Here are a few of my budget marketing favourites:

Canva – Canva has pre-set templates for resources from business cards to PowerPoint Presentations. You can create professional marketing materials without breaking the bank.

MailChimp – Send professional looking emails to your contacts and track how effective they are

Buffer or Hootsuite – Use these tools to help you schedule your Social Media activity in a dedicated hour or so a week.

Google Search Console and Google Analytics – Keep on top of your website’s health and performance with these free Google tools, extremely budget friendly!

Most importantly of all, decide what you have the time and budget to create and commit to delivering it regularly. A small amount of planned and well executed marketing will always be more effective than peaks and troughs of rushed activity!



The CPCA Growth Hub team would like to thank Nicki for taking the time to share her tips with us. If you would like to know more about Nicki and what she can do for your business, visit www.abbeygatemarketing.co.uk or call 01284 723245.

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With funding from the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority, Plunkett is currently able to offer early-stage community businesses free advice and support on how to get their business off the ground, including guidance on community engagement, legal structures, business planning and raising the funds to do it.