How to Market Your Startup Within a Small Budget

If you're building your small business and figuring out how to get new customers, here's how to do startup marketing on a budget.
startup marketing on a budget

Any business stands on two pillars: marketing and operations. The operations part focuses on the manufacturing of the product or providing a service, and the marketing ensures that you have people to buy those products or services.

A business can’t survive if you don’t have anyone to pay for what you offer. This the reason why businesses spend the biggest portion of their budget on marketing. Startups don’t exactly have a budget to allocate for marketing; however, that doesn’t change the fact that marketing is still important for them even if they have to invest from their pockets. This article briefly discusses how you can market your startup even if you are on a budget.

Define Clear Marketing Goals

If you are going to spend money on something, you should be clear about what you plan to achieve with it. Write down clear and detailed goals of your marketing campaign and then take the next action accordingly. Some common goals could be:

  • Increase brand awareness
  • Attract online leads
  • Get sales
  • Engage prospects

As a startup, you should first focus on increasing brand awareness. Once your prospects get to know you, they will trust you more with their money. You shouldn’t shy away if you have to provide your service or product for cheap or even free to attract customers. If you are short on money, you can take online business loans to invest.

Create Audience Personas

Marketing is about reaching out to potential customers and telling them about your company and the products or services you offer. Reaching them is one part of the struggle; the next is to deliver the right message that will attract them.

You could destroy your existing customer base in a second if you deliver the wrong message. That’s why you need to have a complete understanding of your target audience.

Do thorough research about the behavior and demographics of people who are likely to buy what you offer. Write down these details and it will become an audience persona. It should include details like gender, age, interests, and location. Keep these personas in mind when developing any marketing campaign.

Choose the Right Social Platforms

See which of the social media websites have most of your potential customers. When it comes to fashion accessories, Instagram is on the top. A lot of people browse through these sites just to look for the latest clothing and shoes.

Likewise, LinkedIn is a great platform if you are offering something that a professional would buy. For example, digital marketing services. Choose top platforms and create business pages on them. You can publish regular posts and use paid advertisements to get exposure.

Check out’s Goal-Driven Social Media Marketing Plan

Offer Referral Incentives

Most startups rely on this to run their business. They don’t usually spend on marketing ask their customers to get them more customers. You can get them to refer you to other people, but it really encourages them when you offer them an incentive in return.

That incentive could be an amount per client, a share in the project, or a discount. The safest practice would be to offer them a discount. It would help you retain them, get more work from them, and get referrals.

Reach Out to an Influencer

Influencer marketing always works if you hire the right person for the job. You don’t necessarily need to pay them to promote your business. If you can build good relations with them and exchange favors, that should also help you get more clients.

You don’t find influencers just on social media sites. There might also be many bloggers who wouldn’t mind linking to your website. Digital marketers publish useful blogs and infographics so people would share them and link back to their websites.

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