10 Ideas to Stretch Your Start-Up Marketing Budget

Start-up marketing budget

Most small start-ups have limited marketing dollars, which means that marketing on a budget becomes a priority. When marketing money is limited, every dollar spent needs to provide your start-up with results. However, just because a start-up has a small budget does not mean that it is impossible to enjoy incredible results. To make the most of a limited marketing budget, here are a few start-up marketing ideas that offer results and savings.

Idea #1 – Stick to Marketing Campaigns that Work

One of the best startup marketing ideas to follow when trying to stretch your marketing budget is to stick to marketing campaigns that work. When a marketing campaign provides results, avoid scrapping that campaign just to try something new. As long as consumers are reacting positively to these campaigns, keep running them. While dated information may need to be updated, throwing out existing copy that provides results is a waste of money. Ads can continue bringing in results for years, so stick to campaigns that are working. If the campaign becomes ineffective, then it’s worth the money to change marketing tactics.

Idea #2 – Make the Most of Every Ad

For small start-ups marketing on a budget, it is important to make the most of every ad. Ads are expensive, especially if you are just using them for space advertising. While some of your money may be used for space advertising, making the most of the ads you use is important. In fact, those ads can be used in multiple ways to get the marketing message out to the company’s target audience.

One option is to order reprints of ads, handing out the ads to existing customers and potential customers. Ad reprints may be sent out with company literature or may bed use as direct mail items. Ads can easily be turned into product data sheets or even used to create education material. Once money is spent on an ad, use it to its full potential, finding different ways to use those ads repeatedly to save money.

Idea #3 – Save Money with Modular Literature

Another of the startup marketing ideas to try is using modular literature. Modular literature allows companies to create a single brochure layout that can be tweaked to fit the needs of specific products or marketing campaigns. Most sections in modular literature will remain the same, while a few sections may be tailored to feature specific products or reach out to a targeted audience. Creating separate brochures can quickly become expensive, so modular literature offers startups the ability to save money while still creating quality literature that meets specific market needs.

Idea #4 – Don’t Allow Other Companies to Dictate Your Promotions

Small startups often make the mistake of looking at the brochures and other literature offered by other companies. However, allowing other companies to dictate your promotions is a big mistake that will make marketing on a budget nearly impossible. Most startups do not need fancy brochures or mailers. Focus on promotions that focus on the needs of your market instead of looking at what other companies are putting out to their customers.

Idea #5 – Consider Automation for Lead Generation

Lead generation is an important part of marketing any startup. Many new startups find that using marketing automation software offers great benefits and helps maximize your marketing budget. With automated lead generation software, it’s easy to send out messages automatically that will both capture and nurture your leads, starting at the first inquiry and working with leads until they result in a sale. Automation allows you to increase productivity and reduce the amount of money you spend on lead generation tasks.

Idea #6 – Check Out Startup Events

More than likely, you’ll be able to find startup events in your area where you can talk to other individuals starting a business and individuals that have similar interests. These events offer you a great way to begin networking. In many cases, you’ll meet individuals that can help you with your startup. Not only will you get valuable information, but these events often are a wonderful place to find marketing companies that can help you successfully market your startup.

Idea #7 – Use a Marketing Firm

Sometimes startups make the mistake of trying to do everything in-house, thinking that it will be the cheaper option. However, using a marketing firm can actually provide a better return on investment. Marketing firms have experienced professionals that have the skills and knowledge to help you market your new business. Most business owners do not have the marketing expertise needed to come up with the best marketing strategy while sticking to a tight marketing budget. By hiring a marketing firm, startups can work with professionals that are experts in marketing, ensuring that the marketing dollars spent bring a big payoff.

Idea #8 – Partner with Other Startups

Many startups are dealing with marketing on a budget. Partnering with other startups on promotional campaigns can save money for everyone involved. While companies should avoid partnering with competitors, doing promotional campaigns with non-competing startups may offer great results. For example, if your company makes custom candy products, consider partnering with other startups that make custom products, such as custom clothing, shoes or even jewelry.

Idea #9 – Make the Most of Each Piece of Content

Make the most of each piece of content to keep your marketing expenditures low. Copy, photos, videos, layouts and illustrations can often be reused in some way. By reusing each piece of content already in place, a significant amount of money can be saved. For example, photos used in a brochure for your startup could be reused on a website or website copy could be reused in company flyers or brochures.

Idea #10 – Stick to the Budget When Hiring Creative Content

Sometimes start-ups need to hire creative content, but when doing so, stick to the company marketing budget. While it’s important to look at credentials of the individuals being hired, it’s also essential to look at their fees and whether they fit the start-up’s marketing budget. While a top photographer for a publicity photo could charge more than $1000 per day, it’s possible to find quality photographers to shoot a publicity photo for only a fraction of that cost. Whether hiring photographers, writers, consultants or other creative talent, ensure that the cost fits into the current budget.


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