Social media is powerful. According to the PEW Research Center, seven-in-ten Americans use social media. Social media use blossomed from only 5% in 2005, to about 50% in 2005, and finally 69% today.
It’s not just popular with individuals – businesses have taken to social media in every imaginable way possible, using various platforms, from Facebook and Twitter to Snapchat and Pinterest, to market their product or service. The best thing about using social media that there are plenty of inexpensive marketing options for businesses on a tight budget. Here are five to get your started:
1. Create Social Media Business Profiles
This is a simple step and one that many businesses take, but if you have yet to create social media business profiles, you should get started today! It’s simple to create a Facebook page for your business, or an Instagram profile to share photos of your products. When you first get started, try one or two platforms, see how they work out, and expand from there. If you’re able to keep up with the demands of your social media profiles (here’s some information about how often you should post), then branch out and try new something new!
2. Facebook Boosted Posts
Boosting a Facebook post is a perfect combination of simplicity and cost-effectiveness. You can boost anything from a status update and photo, to a video or special offer. Boosting a post is simple: just click the “boost post” button at the bottom of your post (your page must be a business page, not a personal Facebook account for these options to appear), and choose your audience, budget, duration, and payment method, and you’re ready to go! Keep in mind that you’ll have to set up your payment method and audiences beforehand, and stay within Facebook’s advertising guidelines to boost the post. The minimum budget for a boosted post is $1 per day and you can run a boosted post for any amount of time you choose, so these can be as cost effective as you need. Boosted posts appear higher in news feeds and on Instagram, so it’s more likely that your audience will see them and engage with your post and page, thereby building brand awareness and maybe even helping you make sales.
3. Snapchat Geofilters
Snapchat has a wide variety of marketing and advertising options for their platforms. Some of the ads and lenses can costs hundreds of thousands of dollars, but they do have cost effective marketing options for businesses on a tight budget. Snapchat’s On-Demand Geofilters are overlays for Snaps (photos taken on Snapchat) the can be active during certain times and in certain areas. We’ve designed filters for various clients, but you can create your own design, too by making a 1080 by 1920 pixel image with a transparent background. Snapchat also provides templates that you can use for a quick and simple Geofilter. Every time Snapchat users take a photo in the area where the filter is active, they have the chance to use it as an overlay and send it to their friends. This is a great way to gain exposure and create excitement about certain events or promotions you might be holding. Here are some examples of filters we’ve created for our clients:
4. Facebook Live
Facebook Live enables user to record video and broadcast it live to their friends, followers, or the public, as it happens. You can go live for up to 4 hours and there are various things you can touch on for topics, such as events, webinars, product demos, sneak peeks, new products arrivals, and much more. Facebook Live is a great way to market because it takes advantage of the popular video medium and eliminates the need for editing, making a quick and easy tactic to use. Best of all, it’s free. Facebook offers tutorials for Facebook Live as well!
5. Instagram Promotions
Because Instagram is now owned by Facebook, the two platforms are interconnected when it comes to marketing and advertising. In order to promote posts on Instagram, you first have to convert your profile to a business accounts and be an admin on the Facebook page connected to the account. Afterward, all you have to do it click the “promote” button on the bottom of the post you’d like to put some dollars into, fill in the details by setting the audience, duration, and other details (much like a Facebook boosted post), and tap “promote” again. Much like Facebook’s Boosted Posts, Instagram Promotions allow you to spend as much or as little as you’d like to build brand awareness and sell your product or service.
Have you tried out these social media marketing options for businesses on a tight budget? Let us know how they worked out!