While large companies have the funds to invest in PR and advertising, smaller businesses quite often have to handle their own marketing.

If investing in a media team or outsourcing to professionals are not viable options, here are a few handy tips for those wanting to raise their business profile by themselves:

Sponsor local events

A particularly good move for local shops and professional services located in small towns and villages is to sponsor a charity event or annual gala. If there’s an occasion where literally everybody is going to be there, this is a paramount opportunity to promote your brand.

This will help you receive a positive standing in the community and there’s also a chance of being mentioned in local media reports about the event.  Don’t just stop at providing money though. If it’s a market or festival you’re supporting, set up a stall to sell your own goods and meet potential new customers.

Or why not establish your very own charity event and pick out a different local charity to support each year? People love businesses that give back to their community.

Build your online presence

Simply having a website is not enough nowadays. In order to be visible to potential customers, you need to be active on social media channels such as Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

Rather than spending hours every day updating these channels, you can actually prepare a lot of the posts beforehand using social media management tools like Hootsuite. This kind of approach also allows for convenient cross-channel updates.

If you run a creative business and have lots of lovely photographs, then imagery-focused outlets such as Instagram and Pinterest can be really lucrative for getting your brand and products out there.

Besides social media, it’s also well worth setting up a blog on your site and keeping it regularly updated with fresh and relevant content. Too many websites become stagnant and blogging is a way to keep the search engine spiders returning on a regular basis, resulting in increased traffic and business.

Collaborate

No man is an island and it helps to work together where possible. Arranging mutually beneficial recommendations with local businesses is a brilliant move for developing customer trust.

If you own a bridal shop, for example, work on building relationships with associated businesses such as florists and wedding venues so that they’re likely to guide potential customers your way and vice versa.

Have any additional tips? Let us know below or tweet us over @TheInsuranceOct!