Recently I met with Jade, a local business owner, comedian, student (studying her MBA) and wearer of many hats.
Like a lot of us, Jade likes to do things herself. However she was feeling frustrated with her marketing. We had a catch up to see how starfish marketing might help, and we (both of us) discovered that Jade is not ready to outsource her marketing. (We don't call it a discovery session for nothing.)
That doesn't mean we couldn't help – Jade left our meeting with some tips and tools she could use – free marketing donuts (so to speak).
As business owners we all know that marketing is important. Yet it always falls to the bottom of the very important to do list, and often falls off that list entirely.
Often its time restraints that means marketing doesn’t get done. Or its financial restrictions, whether that being fear of not getting a return on your investment (more on that in an upcoming blog), or cashflow issues.
At starfish marketing we know we deliver value for our clients. We know that what we are doing for our clients makes a difference for them and their business. After all, making a difference is one of the key drivers behind why we do what we do.
We also know that there are a lot of business owners out there who either want to do their own marketing or they are happy to outsource but are not currently in a position to do so.
So, in the interest of making a difference and helping more business owners with your marketing, here are your marketing donuts (nine free marketing tools) for you to use.
Note: we have linked to each of the marketing tool websites where possible.
1. Google My Business
If you do nothing else, get yourself set up on Google My Business.
This is a free Google service that helps you manage how your business information appears across Google, including Google Search and Google Maps. See the image to the right for an example.
2 . Google Analytics
If you’ve got a website then Google Analytics is a must. There’s a pretty good article here on 10 good reasons why you should use Google Analytics.
If you don’t have a website, then you need to get one. There are a number of reasons you need a website and not just a Facebook page (a topic for a future blog – stay tuned). As a minimum you can set up your Google My Business account website – it’s fairly basic but its better than nothing.
Staying in touch with your clients, stakeholders, target market etc on a regular basis is a great way to stay front of mind so people remember you when they need your product or service.
MailChimp is free email marketing platform (up to a point). If you have less than 2000 contacts then you can use MailChimp for free.
4. Social Media
Being on social media is important.
“Social Media users in Australia are some of the most active in the world, with a total of around 60% of the country’s population an active user on Facebook, and 50% of the country logging onto Facebook at least once a day.” Social Media News, January 2019.
The important thing with social media is to choose and focus on the platform where your market is active. You can read more about that here.
Canva is an online graphic design platform. It’s got stacks and stacks of templates and images you can use and adjust. You can access a paid account, but the free version is pretty good and it’s easy to use. The tip here is to be consistent with the look and feel of the designs you create for your business so that you are strengthening and/or building your brand consistently.
If you don’t know how to do something, like set up a Facebook advertising campaign, head on over to Youtube and do a search on what you need instruction on. There are instructional videos on almost everything there. Even on how to make a paper mache starfish!
Video is currently the marketing king. If you google “reasons to use video marketing” a plethora of articles come up, ranging from five to 25 reasons you should use video in your marketing. So using video in your marketing is becoming more and more important.
Lumen5 is free if you don’t mind having their branding at the end of your video. You can easily create videos from still images. And bonus points – you can even access free images within Lumen5. Or you can load up your own images.
You can pay to have some additional features and remove the Lumen5 branding.
8. Free stock images
These four sites all provide a wide range of free stock images. There are probably more sites out there. You can also use Canva for access to free stock images too.
9. Us (starfish marketing)
At the end of the day, we believe that marketing can make a difference for your business. And we know the more successful businesses out there, the better it is for our community.
So, while we would love to help you with your marketing, we also understand that this is not always an option. So, we share a stack of templates and marketing information here on our website. Feel free to access them.
Basically, there are a stack of tools, templates and information out there to help you with your marketing. And a lot of them are free (dollars – not your time).
However, and you know this is coming if you read my blogs regularly, having a strategy behind your marketing is absolutely vital. Your marketing success depends on you knowing what you want to achieve and how you're going to get there – your marketing strategy.
Finally, here's what Jade had to say after our catch up. (Shared with Jade's permission.)
I saw Mell the next day and now a week on I've got a neat little campaign happening, some videos, more templates, more spread sheets, more stuff to do and more confidence with promoting my brand. Meeting with Mell was like a having a psych session for my marketing strategy. Excellent stuff.
We hope these delicious free marketing donuts help you too.
Bonus freebie # 10
If you have a wordpress website, there's a plugin called Yoast. It is the best thing ever to help you with your SEO. The free version is great and there's an upgraded paid version. I can't tell you much about the paid version because we only use the free one. Gotta love free stuff!
Let's catch up
If you decide you would prefer to outsource your marketing, then give us a call.
Let's catch up and find out how we can work together to get your marketing happening.