12 powerful low-cost marketing ideas that not only reduce their marketing cost significantly but increase customer footfall remarkably. Let us discuss about those 12 techniques in detail: ## **1. START CLIENT APPRECIATION PROGRAM:** **Sometimes, your next best customer is your last customer.** To bring your last customer back, you can make a Client Appreciation Program/Client Appreciation Day/Client Appreciation Department and use the following techniques: - Give him a Hand-Written Thankyou Note. This will provide personalized attention to your client and he will always remember it. - Give pre-sale access to your existing customers during discount season & seasonal sale. - Give him access to new inventory before making it public. - Organize customer appreciation events for existing and important customers (these are the 20% customers who give you 80% business). - Wish him on his birthday and anniversary and give them special offers. Put personalized welcome board for your customer in your office if your customers are few. ## **2. CREATIVE CONTENT IDEAS:** Use creative content to generate customer traffic such as: - Add infographics to your content. Infographics mean presenting the content in a graphical format. - Add videos in your content - Write content from customer’s perspective. - Write content on future predictions and hot topics of your industry. - Use product content comparison guide to help customers make comparison between different products. - Copy the content marketing style used by masters in your industry. - Include social proof of your brand in your content. - Use gamification of your content. ## **3. PROMOTION THROUGH CONTEST:** Organize contests for your existing or potential customers. **For example:** A tractor sell has organized a contest for all the villagers who have tractor of any company or who wants to buy a tractor. So, not only organize contests for your existing or potential customers; but, also, give them opportunity to share the contest. **For example:** - In your website, give link for sharing the contest. - You can give some extra benefit to people who share the contest. Apart from this, you can use the following techniques for more engagement: - Use social tags to your contest for increasing traffic or creating engagement. - Promote your contest on social media. As contests are unusual, so, people want to know about it. - If you create an unusual and attractive contest, then it will help in engaging more people. ## **4. ASK FOR ENDORSEMENT:** - Some people feel shy to ask people to praise them. But, do not feel shy, you should ask people to compliment you because if you ask 10 people for admiration, then atleast 4 people will do that. - When you brand, position, and promote the admiration given by 4 people, this testimonial route helps you a lot in marketing and promoting your brand. - Ask your happy and satisfied customers to give ratings and reviews because nowadays, people see ratings and reviews comparisons. - Make testimonial videos of your customers along with ratings and reviews. - Make your YouTube Channel, promote it, and give its link to your customer so as to attract potential buyers. ## **5. BUILD SCARCITY WITH LIMITED EDITION PRODUCT:** - Sometimes, you can do the branding and positioning of your existing product by creating its scarcity in the market. - Anything whose availability is limited attracts more customers. - People feel a pain of loss if they miss an opportunity. So, you can go for flash sales as done by Xiaomi. Flash sales means selling a product only for a limited period. **For example:** **1. Flash Sale of a Product** - If a person announces, “I am opening the sales of this product and it will be available from 12- 3 pm only.” It will attract huge crowd during 12- 3 pm because people started feeling like they will fail, if they don’t get that product. - So, the customer does not have a fear that he will not get the product; he only fears that he will fail. **2. Mr. Entrepreneur’s Event by Jain Community** - In Vadodara, Jain Community has organized Mr. Entrepreneur’s Event in an auditorium with a capacity of 1,500. - Jain Community announced that the tickets of the event will open on 15th June 2019 at 1 pm in this Hotel. - The 1500 seats of Mr. Entrepreneur’s Event were sold in just 15 minutes because they have built scarcity for the tickets. This is the power of scarcity. ## **6. WEBINAR, VIRTUAL MEETING AND SEMINAR:** - In virtual seminar, you just have to give a link on a website and mention the time of seminar. - Make your seminar attractive to attract and engage your customers. - When customers get engaged, it increases the recall value of your brand in their minds. - When you give some information free of cost and it solved customers’ problems, then the customer will come only to you as you have developed a relationship with him by helping him. > “Sales mehnat karke nahi hoti, Sales wo hai jo ishare ishare me ho jaye” ## **7. NETWORKING IS OXYGEN:** Although digitalization has reduced the instances of physical interactions, the value of physical meeting is still very important. So, you should: - Build a warm relationship with people by meeting them physically. - Involve in frequent physical interactions with people who can help you get referral business. Some professions like architect, interior designing, doctor, lawyer, and chartered accountant works only on networking. **For example:** - Mr. Entrepreneur has a client who is a 21 years old Interior Designer. In the first year, he has earned Rs. 1.5 crores only through networking. - Mr. Entrepreneur believes that he can easily earn Rs. 15-150 crores in the coming years because he values networking and relationships. - Initially, he has earned less money but he has built good network and now, he is getting good business. ## **8. LOCAL MEDIA IS ALWAYS COST EFFECTIVE:** - Build relationships in local media. - Search a PR person or agency in local area. A PR agency will take Rs. 15,000-20,000 per month and publish about your brand on 15-20 local newspapers, TV, magazine or 15-20 times in a month. - It will build more local traffic than other mediums. **For example:** - In Chhattisgarh, national news channels do not have that much reach as compared to local channels because people want to watch about local news more. Local newspaper and local channels seems to have low reach but it is a perfect medium to get the right target audience at affordable rates. ## **9. GIVE NEW LIFE TO OLD DATA:** If you have low budget, you cannot spend more on advertising. So, you should: **a. Prepare a strong database of all customers and transactions through CRM:** - If you don’t have CRM software, you can use excel sheet to record the customer data. - Though CRM software is cheaper, so, you can install CRM. **b. Take care of customers who have not visited you again from a very long time:** A colleague of Mr. Entrepreneur was a regular user and loyal customer of Ola App. One day, he got a notification from Ola App that payment can only be made through Credit Card. As he don’t use credit card, so, he switched to Uber from Ola. So, you should rebrand or remarket your product to your old customers in a manner that they comes back. For this, you can: - Make a Hot, Warm, and Cold list (customer whom you have contacted but they don’t comeback) of your customers. - Make new strategy or scheme to get back the customers listed in your Cold list. For preparing new strategy, you don’t need to invest money; you just need to use your brains. ## **10. SIDEWALK CHALK WRITING:** - It is a traditional way of marketing products outside regional retail shops or stores. - In this method, the regional retail shopkeepers can paint the road outside their shop or write something on the walls outside their shops using chalk. - This method becomes so influential that it is used by big brands like McDonalds and Coca-Cola. **For example:** - McDonalds has painted the zebra crossing in McDonald’s design. - Similarly, Coca-Cola, ran an ad campaign with a health message, in which regular coke design was painted on the stairs with a sentence saying “for those using stairs” and diet coke design was painted on the escalators with a sentence saying “for those using escalators”. In the same way, you can also make your own sidewalk chalk writing campaign via: - Making and placing unusual paintings and standees outside the shop. - Putting the unusual posters or paintings of food items outside your shop. You don’t need money to write or design with chalk or paint. The only thing you need is creativity. ## **11. CREATIVE VEHICLE BRANDING:** If you are in a small city, you can search students and youths having cycles, motorbikes and cars for promoting your brand in the following ways: - Give some rent to the students for branding their vehicles to promote your products or services. - Paint a discolored vehicle of a student and put your logo on it. - Design the student’s vehicles with car magnates and unusual design bars for cycles and motorbikes. - Paint one gate of a car for branding purposes. As these students live in this city and keep roaming around the city on their vehicles, so your brand will get more eyeball attention. ## **12. PARTNER WITH INFLUENCERS** Collaborating with someone who has influence in your industry can help you generate more traffic by getting his popularity’s rub off effect. “Jiske pass Janta hai, uski Duniya sunta hai” So, you can generate traffic by partnering with local political leaders, social workers, celebrities, and social media influencers to endorse your product. Customers naturally listen to such people and help you generate traffic and increase your product’s visibility. **For example:** Mr. Entrepreneur makes Case Studies on different brands and as a result, these brands get huge traffic, which includes new and fresh customers as well. ## **LEARNINGS:** - Create a Client Appreciation Program to appreciate your customers and give them personalized attention - Display information in graphical and visual format to make it more engaging. - Launch attractive promotional contests in which customers can participate. - Make testimonials of your brand by taking feedback of your existing customers. - Do branding and positioning of your product by creating its scarcity in market. - Organize free webinars, virtual meetings and seminars to share useful information about your product. - Search a PR agency to publish about your brand on local newspaper &TV. - Prepare a strong database of all customers and transactions through CRM. - Make unusual paintings, drawing and standees about your product and place them outside your store - Give small amount of benefits to customers in return of painting your brand’s advisement on their vehicles - Collaborate with local political leaders, social workers, celebrities, social media influencers to endorse your product