You have just come up with a brilliant plan for a business, but money is tight and you want to get started. Where can you go to get marketing help on a dime?
Tip #1 - Free Logo Design
It all starts with your Company logo. Although the free logo design websites are free if you just want to download a low res image, it will cost you a few dollars to download a high resolution graphic (anywhere from $20.00 to $50.00) which you will need for your website. A professional designer can cost you hundreds of dollars, so why not try free logo designs from these websites.
Tip #2 - Business Cards
Many business people I meet at network groups use Vistaprint for their business cards. They also have a logo design program too if you want to use a one stop shop. Vistaprint is very fast even using their standard delivery, usually well within 10 business days. They always have specials, for example right now you can get 250 business cards for $10.00, with free shipping.. You may be tempted to add more expensive items to your shopping cart, but be strong, resist, Let's stick to the basics!
Tip #3 - Web Hosting and Domain Name
There are many web hosting services to choose from but all are not equal. Usually if you sign up for a web hosting the domain name is free. I recommend that you go to a couple of review sites to see what they suggest and then pick one that is in the top 10. Here is a link to a review service.
Tip #4 - Website Design
Resist the idea of paying a monthly membership fee for your web design. It is best to go with your own web design. The largest source of free website design templates is WordPress. Multi-million companies such as Forbes, and eBay use this platform so it should be good enough for you. When choosing your web hosting provider, pick one that has a WordPress installation and you will be all set. When picking your website design template (once you have installed WordPress), pick one that is "responsive" ie resizes automatically for the user's browser whether laptop, tablet or smartphone.
Make sure you add social share buttons on your website home page.
WordPress doesn't require you to know CSS or any programming language, but if you do need to learn a few snippets of code, there are many forums where you can post your questions and experts will answer them.
If you want tutorials on WordPress, there are many posted on YouTube. By far the easiest for newbies to understand are the ones by Tyler Moore.
Tip #6 - Photoshop Alternative
Professional designers use Photoshop, but if you don't have the budget for a designer and have some photographs you want cropped, or altered in any way, a free alternative is Paint.Net. The free download is Norton approved.
Tip #7 - Use Social Media
The best advice we can give, find out where your potential clients hang out and use those social media platforms. Choose from LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, YouTube and Youinc.. Whichever platforms you choose, be consistent and post on a regular basis.
Tip #8 - Blog
Once you have set up your website, add a blog page and then write about subjects that your potential customers would be interested in. Your blogs can then be posted on social media to be read anywhere by anybody who is interested in your blog material.
Tipe #9 - The Power of Google
Not only is Google the #1 search engine, it is also great for website analytics, trends, adwords, Google + and YouTube.
Tip #10 - Network
There is nothing like good old fashioned face to face meetings to network with people who might either be potential customers or guide you to potential customers. The easiest way to find a business network in your area is to go to the Meetup site and join like-minded business people.
We hope you will share other resources that you have found to get your new business up and running.