If you’re a female entrepreneur or business owner, there are two things that we all know for sure when it comes to marketing: You have to do it… and it’s costs money. Advertising and marketing costs are a part of the overall budget for retail giants like Target or Amazon. But if you’re one of the millions of women-owned small businesses, then you likely don’t have an abundant marketing budget. If you have one at all.

When you’re an entrepreneur every penny you use for branding, marketing, and advertising has to count!

So what’s a girl to do?

How do you market your business when you don’t have a substantial budget?

Better yet, how do you do it effectively and get the results you need want?

Here are 3 ways to market your business on a budget

Facebook Ads

As an entrepreneur that doesn’t have the cash flow of a major corporation, you have to be smart with how your marketing dollars are spent. It is possible to promote your business and build your brand at the same time. The key is to be strategic and cost-effective with your efforts. It takes money to make money, but that doesn’t mean that it should break the bank.

One of the smartest things you can do is to find out where your ideal customers are and get in front of them.

The question is how do you do that with a limited budget?

Answer: Start small. Use social media. Know your customer profile and while platforms they frequent.

If you’re looking to market on social media we suggest starting with Facebook for these 3 reasons:

  1. Affordability. With Facebook ads, you control how much you spend. It’s an easy setup process to get started and, if done right, you can start seeing results immediately.
  2. Reach. There are almost 2 billion ACTIVE users on Facebook. It’s a great platform to get in front of your potential customers and get your business noticed.
  3. Targeting and Retargeting. Your Facebook ads are only as good as your ability to target your ideal customer. Have a strong ideal customer profile. Know where they live, the type of movies they like and the food they eat… Get to know your customer! Accurate targeting is the KEY to successful ad campaigns.

Start Vending at Events

The goal is to get your business out in the front of as many new and potential customers as possible. Conferences and events are a great place to showcase your business. When you’re a vendor at an event you have the opportunity to personally interact with your potential customer. The key is finding the right events!

Find local events that have affordable fees and would be ideal for your target market. Search online on sites like eventbrite.com to find the right opportunities. Once you’ve book an event you want to make sure that you’re adequately prepared.

Tip: Also search Facebook events for potential events in your area.

Invest in printed promotional materials like marketing cards, flyers, brochures… etc – to make sure that your presentation is professional. If you have room in the budget consider purchasing a pop-up trade show booth. It’s the type of marketing investment that pays you back over and over again.  You want your event space to encourage attendees to stop and find out more about your business. 

Use Your Website

It’s nice to have a good looking website. You want people to know who you are and what your business offers. It should be attention-grabbing and professional. You don’t want to turn potential customers away with a bland, boring website. Aesthetics and functionality are important but your website should also help you to reach new customers and encourage them to do business with you.

Tip: Get a Google Adwords account. Use the same targeting parameters that you used with your Facebook ads and start driving customers to your site.  Another benefit of using Adwords is there’s no minimum spend amount – meaning you can start with limited funds and start getting results. 

Have you created a buzz around your business with a limited budget? Share your tips in the comments!