How to market and advertise on a shoe-string budget

With Christmas approaching, marketing will have leapt up on your priority list. But, you don’t have to be John Lewis wielding a £7 million advertising budget to get your message across. If you focus your efforts, every small business can get maximum visibility in your market this Christmas.

Focus on one social channel

Spreading yourself too thin trying to communicate on all channels can be a costly waste of resource. “Find the balance between where your customers are most likely to be, and where your competitors aren’t” explains Guy Blaskey, founder of Pooch & Mutt.

Guy has a team of just seven employees but they’ve achieved heady heights of success placing products with some of the largest retailers in the UK, including Waitrose. Part of that success has been their focused approach on social media. “Our Facebook page has over 54,000 followers – it’s the biggest following of any independent dog food company in the UK – you just need to pick one social network and do it well. With a small budget, you can’t do all of them and you shouldn’t try”.

Top tip: Evaluate, how your customers interact with you. If they’re frequently tagging you on Twitter asking about your B&Bs rooms, focus your efforts there. But if your Instagram pictures featuring ‘Christmas dish of day’ is causing an influx of likes and regrams, keep them coming. Watch out for duplicating your competitor’s work, but there’s nothing wrong with healthy banter to catch a consumer’s eye. And remember, get those call to actions front and centre!

Make Christmas a hot and steamy event

No, it’s not what you’re thinking.

While Christmas is a time for ‘good cheer’ (egg nog at the ready, everyone) coffee sales have boomed in 2015, with 1.7 billion cups of coffee selling every year.

Even pubs and fast food chains are muscling into the industry, with Greggs reportedly selling £1 million worth of coffee each week. Small businesses can play to this consumer interest by luring in visitors for a free cup of the good stuff at a specialist event, or even to the first 50 customers who shuffle in out of the cold.

With heightened awareness of drink driving at Christmas, and many consumers driving to city centre locations, consumers will be glad of a non-alcoholic alternative and your Christmas budget won’t binge on booze.

Top tip: Whatever your industry, make sure you tell the local press what you’re up to and invite them along. If you’re planning a live reading of ‘Twas the night before Christmas’ for families and mummy bloggers, see if a local radio station would like to record, or even broadcast the event live.

You could even move your event to a busy high street location. Make sure your social handles, and any offers, are clearly sign posted, and teach every member of staff how to clearly direct your consumers back to your premises or website to raise awareness, and clinch that sale.

Related Articles

DCP228 and Business Electricity

What is DCP228? DCP228 is a regulation to be introduced by Ofgem in April 2018 which will change the way busin...

Read More
energy news

DCP 161 – Excess Capacity Charges

If your business uses a Half Hourly (HH) meter for its energy supply, make sure you’re ready for DCP 161...

Read More
Scottish Power logo

Total Gas & Power

Total Gas & Power is a business energy supplier, wholly owned by Total SA. It has been a leading business ...

Read More
Excellent, 9.8 / 10


"Lorraine, the agent who attended to me, was extremely efficient and professional. The quotations obtained were very competitive and presented in an easily understandable format. All queries were attended to and replies forthcoming speedily. As a representative of the organisation, I could only present the proposals I obtained and, unfortunately, the committee elected to use another company. From my point of view, Lorraine made my task to gather all relevant details very easy and her attitude was professional and courteous throughout. I have no reservations in recommending SmB to other businesses who seek to change energy suppliers."

This review was posted by Two Locks Church on the 20th of March 2018

Can not recommend highly enough

"Can not recommend highly enough. Pamwan was an absolute delight to deal with. Very thorough and patient which made the whole experience easy and straightforward."

This review was posted by Kirby Marie on the 20th of March 2018

Business switch

"Thank you Nicole for your efficient, friendly and patient service and returning paperwork so quickly to start the process."

This review was posted by Rita Westwood on the 19th of March 2018

thanks Mr Pamwan Johnson excellent service

"thanks Mr Pamwan Johnson excellent service"

This review was posted by kashif ahmad on the 19th of March 2018

Mark Weeks was very helpful

"Mark Weeks was very helpful, even though in the end the difference was so little that we decided not to switch, Would defiantly recommend Switch my Business."

This review was posted by Ann Manson on the 19th of March 2018