Whether it’s a big brand that has been on the market for a long time or a new startup just looking for its place in a highly competitive environment, free or low-budget ways to promote your business can be great finds. No matter how well-thought-out your marketing strategy is, it can always be boosted by cost-effective practices that might not have been on your radar.

Are you intrigued? Keep reading to find proven strategies for business growth that will cost you nothing or require minimal investment.

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15 Free and Low-Budget Ways to Promote Your Business

#1. Start a blog

Wondering who reads blogs in the social media era? You’ll be surprised to learn that over four billion people worldwide do so. What’s more interesting from a business perspective is that a brand with a dedicated blog generates 55% higher traffic. Other opportunities provided by blogging include increasing brand awareness, better audience engagement, stimulating lead generation, and much more.

One of the key advantages of this promotional channel is that it doesn’t require any money beyond the hosting or CMS fees. If you find the right niche and regularly offer valuable information to readers, you can build a brand community that will share your content, constantly improving brand visibility.

Start your blogging journey with our step-by-step guide on quickly creating a blog

#2. Launch a YouTube channel

Video marketing is the fastest-growing type of marketing in the digital world. According to forecasts, video content will make up 82% of Internet traffic in 2024. Although you can use video on different platforms, YouTube remains the preferred channel for most users to consume this type of content. You can reach many marketing goals with it, from building a solid reputation to attracting potential customers.

Of course, running a channel requires time and resources, but you can do it on your own without hiring contractors. A good camera, microphone, and lighting will be enough to start. Moreover, you can optimize your production with royalty-free footage on any topic, easily found in our library.

Learn how to develop a successful YouTube strategy to engage your audience and generate leads effectively

Фото руки тримають взуття з леопардовим принтом на фоні столу з одягом і аксесуарами

#3. Consider word-of-mouth marketing

This way of promoting your business is not only entirely free but also very powerful. What makes it so effective is that most consumers trust their friends’ recommendations over traditional advertising. This marketing approach is based on the idea that customers promote a brand by sharing good reviews. Sounds like a fantasy, but it’s completely real.

So what can your business do to make customers spread the word? First and foremost, you need to offer a product or service of the highest quality. Satisfied clients will likely tell others about their experience, bringing you wider attention. You can also give customers who leave reviews discounts on their subsequent purchases, which will keep them returning to your brand.

Find another proven word-of-mouth tactics in our article How to Go Viral: The Power of Crowd Marketing for Brands

#4. Try podcasting

A podcast is definitely not the first channel of promotion that comes to mind. And that’s what makes it a great way to stand out from the competition and reach a new audience. Statistics show that there are more than 500 million podcast listeners worldwide. Podcasts are popular since they’re easy to consume, cover a wide range of topics, and usually offer high-quality and valuable content.

Brands can use podcasting to share their stories, industry news, insights, opinions, interviews, and more. By offering your audience this exceptional experience, you have a chance to build more personal relationships and gain their trust. As a result, your listeners can turn into loyal customers.

Looking for memorable tracks to use in your projects? Discover our guide on choosing music for ads, videos, and podcasts with hand-picked music collections

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#5. Join industry events

Event marketing is another efficient approach to growing your business. You can engage customers and convert valuable leads much more easily with face-to-face communication. Event marketing is suitable for various areas and offers a large selection of events such as conferences, expositions, trade shows, seminars, workshops, and more. It’s also a perfect opportunity for networking and finding new partners.

Participation in top events is usually quite pricey, but you can always find more affordable options; for example, local trade shows or online conferences. Also, if you arrange to participate in advance, it is often much cheaper. Moreover, you can host a webinar or workshop to familiarize your audience with your product or service.

Discover global marketing, advertising, and innovation events where you can meet us!

#6. Offer a referral program

A referral program is a form of word-of-mouth marketing. It works like this: you motivate existing customers to recommend your product or service to friends and acquaintances by offering rewards for each referral. Thus, customers promote your brand for you. In return, they receive discounts, gift cards, credits, free products, or other bonuses.

Such cooperation is very efficient since it’s beneficial for both parties. You can turn your clients into brand ambassadors by providing a referral program. Referrals usually attract high-quality leads that are more likely to purchase from you. An additional advantage of referral programs is that you can easily track performance.

Explore the Depositphotos Referral Program with different ways to boost your income!

#7. Get the most out of content

If you want more ways to leverage the power of content marketing for business promotion, discover the potential of user-generated content (UGC). Content with a brand mention created by users offers a number of benefits—from building trust to boosting conversion rate. UGC can take many forms, such as testimonials and reviews, photos, videos, social media and blog posts, etc. To encourage content creation, you may ask your customers, launch a social media challenge, or collaborate with micro-influencers.

One more winning strategy is maximizing the impact of your best-performing content by repurposing it. It involves adapting existing content to different platforms and formats. For example, you can turn a blog publication into a series of social media posts, a script for a YouTube video, or a podcast episode. This approach not only saves you time and resources but also improves visibility and reach, ensuring brand consistency.

Want to know more about extending the lifespan of your content? Dive into 7 strategies for content repurposing

Фото з низького ракурсу на групу друзів, які сидять на сходах і відпочивають після занять

#8. Master SEO

To understand the importance of SEO, it’s essential to know that 68% of Internet use starts with search engines, and 63% of all shopping begins online, even if the purchase happens in an offline store. The main task of search engine optimization is to improve business visibility. Better ranking in search results means wider exposure to potential customers, increases recognition and credibility, and drives conversions.

Key SEO techniques involve keyword research, on-page optimization, link building, and technical SEO. One of the proven ways to enhance rankings is guest blogging: by creating and publishing content on other websites, you can tell a wider audience about your brand or product, increase website traffic, and generate qualified leads.

Find new opportunities to promote your brand and network with the help of guest posting on the Depositphotos blog

#9. Discover the benefits of partnerships

A branding partnership means two or more companies collaborating to reach a common goal. These can be brands from the same industry (for example, the H&M x Mugler collaboration), businesses from different fields (like Apple and Nike), and even competitors (like McDonald’s and Burger King). Partnerships allow brands to reach each others’ audience, improve customer loyalty, and boost sales.

It’s an excellent choice for small businesses that don’t have enough resources to target a broader market. Note that you can create collaborations not only with brands but also with individual creators. This way, you may stand out from the competition and show your artistic side.

Learn more about this topic by reading our guide to collaborations between artists and brands

#10. Set up a Google Business Profile

Google is the ruler of the entire Internet since it accounts for over 91% of all searches. If you want to increase your online visibility and drive traffic to your website, a Google Business Profile (GBP) is a must-have. It’s a free marketing tool allowing business owners to manage how they appear in Google Search, Google Maps, and Google Shopping.

To set up a GBP, open the platform and provide your brand information, location, and contacts. We encourage you to optimize your profile for better ranking in search results. Do so by adding images of your business and relevant keywords. The top profiles have a lot of reviews, which helps to gain users’ trust. Motivate your customers to leave feedback by sharing your unique Google Reviews link. Click “Ask for reviews” on your GBP dashboard to find it.

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#11. Use the power of social media

Social media is a perfect channel for free business promotion that helps to get a broad reach. Today, 61.4% of the world’s population uses social networks, and the average time a person spends on social media daily is 2 hours 24 minutes. Your brand should definitely be present on platforms with such large and active audiences. There are a variety of social networks to consider—from the casual lifestyle-oriented Instagram and TikTok to the more formal and professional-focused LinkedIn, perfect for networking.

Moreover, social networks offer companies built-in tools that provide additional opportunities for business growth. For instance, you can set up a Facebook Business Page to help users discover your brand and interact with them efficiently. It will give you access to valuable platform analytics and insights that can significantly enhance the impact of your marketing efforts. In addition, a Facebook Business Page allows you to create Stores and run ads in all Meta channels (Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, Audience Network).

Want to know more about the potential of paid social media promotion? Сheck out our comprehensive guide on running TikTok ads

#12. Give guerrilla marketing a try

Guerrilla marketing is an unconventional approach to promotion, which means surprising your audience, thus making them talk about your brand. It’s a surefire way to grab people’s attention and generate buzz. Most importantly, guerrilla marketing does not require additional costs because creativity and nonstandard solutions are the primary keys to success.

Guerilla marketing campaigns can be outdoors when you place something unusual in public places (like a McDonald’s crosswalk), indoors when you offer surprising experiences at indoor locations (like the IKEA staircase drawer), event-based when at festivals, presentations, sports events, and more (like the Deadpool Tinder profile), and experiential when focused on interactions with a brand (like the Coca-Cola Grip Bottle campaign).

Learn creative guerrilla marketing strategies to craft viral campaigns that will be on everyone’s lips

Як просувати бізнес з мінімальними витратами або взагалі безкоштовно

#13. Turn to review websites

Your website, social media, and Google Business Profile are not the only places where reviews of your product or service can be found. There are many third-party platforms dedicated to hearing from consumers about their experiences with brands. Trustpilot, Yelp, Tripadvisor, and Better Business Bureau are just a few examples of such websites.

Why do you need reviews on independent platforms? They increase your brand’s visibility and build trust by being perceived as more honest. We recommend regularly tracking all mentions of your brand and responding to reviewers. You can send your clients follow-up emails after purchases or offer rewards to motivate them to leave reviews. Remember to strengthen your credibility by adding reviews to your website, social media, and newsletters.

Since you won’t only receive positive reviews, learn how to handle negative feedback effectively

#14. Take advantage of PR

PR is often underestimated as a promotional method, but it can be beneficial in many ways—from building your brand image to reaching your target audience. Since most people dislike advertising and get used to ignoring it, brands have to look for better integrated and more organic to spread the word. And public relations is perfect for this, notably since it doesn’t cost anything.

Planning to launch a new product or want to share your brand’s achievements? Prepare a well-thought-out press release with all the essential information and contact the media outlets sharing industry news. To make your release compelling to editors, try to add some value, such as sharing current trends in your field, interesting statistics, or insights.

Discover best practices for building, maintaining, and restoring brand reputation in our thematic article

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#15. Give branded merchandise

One more proven way to gain recognition for your business is through promotional products or merchandise. We are talking about various items created by the company and branded with its name or logo. These could be stationery, eco-bags, cups, accessories, printed materials, clothes, etc. Promotional merchandise does not usually cost a lot of money,, but it offers many advantages.

First, merchandising is perceived as a gift and triggers customers’ positive emotions. Second, these are often practical items that people actively use. Having your brand name in plain sight can help people get used to it, increasing their loyalty. The next time they need a relevant product or service, they will likely turn to you.


Final thoughts

In today’s dynamic and ever-changing business environment, there are many ways to promote a brand. You can find multiple affordable and even free options. However, you must choose the appropriate tactics thoughtfully, as each requires time and effort. We recommend starting with one or two new approaches to complement your marketing strategy. Review your performance, prioritize your goals, and think about how you can diversify your marketing efforts to fuel growth for your business.


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