Do you know the number one reason small businesses fail? I’ll give you a second to think.
Well if you didn’t guess-it’s poor planning; more specifically, poor budget planning. No matter how moist your cupcakes are, or how comfortable your Egyptian cotton PJ’s are, no one will know if you don’t create a proper budget. Investing in branding doesn’t have to mean spending $1,000 a month on a corporate agency retainer. With today’s technology and online resources there are 101 ways to start brand building on a budget, and avoid breaking your pockets.
1. Buy Your Own Domain
What’s the first thing you do as a consumer when trying to find information on a new product? You Google it! The worst situation you can put yourself in is having a potential customer looking online for your product, and it not popping up in that Google search. If your dreams are to turn “Sasha’s Sweet Treats” into a cupcake empire, then the most basic step you need to take is purchasing http://www.SashasSweetTreats.com. GoDaddy.com offers domain names starting at merely $12.99 a year. What is a twelve-dollar investment for your future?
Tip: Google “GoDaddy Promo Codes” and you might get it for 99cents!
2. Build a Killer Website
Now ,10-years ago creating a website was a huge and expensive hurdle to jump. You needed HTML, CSS Coding skills, and at least $1,000 to find a designer. What kind of world would it be in 2013 if there wasn’t an easier option? With drag and drop website builders like Wix and SquareSpace, you can become a web designer right in your home office and PJ’s. And don’t opt for the free version if you can afford it. Take that $10 a month, connect http://www.SashasSweetTreats.com, remove those tacky ads and make a name for your brand!
Tip: Not the creative type? Wix offers templates, as well as pros that can build your site for a reasonable price!
Now you’ve designed a beautiful website, you’re making it to the top of the Google list, and your contact us page says “E-Mail us SashaSweetTreats@gmail.com”? Absolutely not! Image is everything and as an entrepreneur you can’t cut corners where it counts. GoDaddy offers a free email account with the purchase of your custom domain name. Or if you want to be really fancy, invest $5 a month into Google Business Apps and receive all the benefits of Google’s free email accounts, including the calendar and cloud storage, and use your custom email address of hello@SashasSweetTreats.com.
Get the Word Out
Now that you’ve given your company a little face-lift it’s time to tell everyone about it! Social Media is a great place to start. You can easily, and freely, enlist the support of friends and family to help spread the word, but to retain your customers a great place to start is a newsletter. With free and affordable companies like MailChimp creating beautiful and informational newsletters is easier than ever. You can even easily sync your Wix and Facebook accounts to generate sign-up forms!
With these simple tips alone you could easily begin brand building on a budget for less than $30! But lets not stop at the basics. Growing your brand should be an ever evolving process, which you should always be investing in. Try finding a few good blogs to stay abreast on tips and ideas for affordable branding options! There’s something new everyday!