Inexpensive Alternatives to Traditional Marketing

There’s no other way to put it: traditional marketing is expensive. If you’re a smaller company, marketing initiatives can take up a huge portion of your expense budget, and you may be left wondering if you’re really getting the best bang for your buck.

Traditional marketing initiatives typically fall into four categories: direct mail, print, broadcast, and telephone. While some of these may still be working for you and your business, there is no doubt that other inexpensive and/or free marketing initiatives are starting to take over, and are probably something you should consider trying. Here are a few inexpensive alternatives to these traditional and dare we say even outdated marketing initiatives:

Traditional Marketing Initiative: Direct Mail
Alternative: Email Marketing
How it saves you money: Sending a letter doesn’t just cost a quarter anymore here in Canada. When you want to capture a wide audience with your direct mail campaign, the cost of post is going to add up, and fast. Emailing Marketing is a great, inexpensive alternative to direct mail. There are many different platforms out there such as MailChimp, Salesforce, or Constant Contact, that allow you to send out mass emails to your email list or subscribers, for very little cost. Not to mention, signing up for MailChimp is totally free!

Traditional Marketing Initiative: Print
Alternative: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn
How it saves you money: Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn are all free social media platforms. You can use all three (plus many more) to share content that you traditionally find in print. Sales/promotions, content about your business, or any kind of updates that you want to share with your audience can all be shared via these platforms. Not only that, but it actually gives you the opportunity to interact with the people who are seeing the content you are putting out there, which is something that traditional print lacks.

Traditional Marketing Initiative: Broadcast
Alternative: Facebook Live
How it saves you money: On April 2, 2016 Facebook launched Facebook Live. This feature is described by Mark Zuckerberg to be like "having a TV camera in your pocket". Facebook Live allows you to broadcast to anyone in the world, and costs you nothing. How's that for savings?!

Traditional Marketing Initiative: Telephone
Alternative: Live Tweeting
How it saves you money: Still want to have more of a direct conversation with your customers? Live Tweeting is a great option to keep the conversation flowing. Your customers can ask questions or share their feedback. You just have to set aside a specific time to be "live" while others hop on to tweet at you. Oh and the cost of using Twitter? Free.

We know that some of these different alternatives can seem overwhelming if you’re very accustomed to traditional marketing. However, like we've mentioned before, you don’t need to know it all! Social media platforms can be a great tool to help you market your business, and luckily almost all of these alternatives are free, which gives you the opportunity to test out what works best for you and your business. Being old school is cool in some scenarios, but in this case, you might save yourself a lot of money if you're open to these new strategies!