TLDR: Yes. The question you should really be asking is what are the most strategic approaches to advertising that my business should take?
Should my business advertise with content? I could spout off a lot of facts and figures about how content, and using it for marketing purposes, generates 3x as many leads as outbound marketing, or how it also drives 6x higher conversion rates, but then I’d probably put you to sleep. I’ll cut to the chase: Content sells. Why?
Because it’s engaging.
So how much should you spend? Small businesses typically allocate 4% of sales on advertising, with new businesses/startups allocating as much as 10%. As a business owner, especially if you have a fixed or limited budget, the key is being strategic about your spend. Below I’m dishing on ways to better to maximize your budget with strategic approaches to marketing and advertising.
I once had someone with a budget of $400 ask to have 60 final images created for them (a project which, depending on the photographer, can cost between $6,000-$15,000). A better way to approach this would have been for this business to look at their business objectives, focusing on the short to medium term (e.g. are you hyping a new product this quarter, or are you running a seasonal promotion, etc? ). Then focus in on a few stellar images that truly define your brand’s look, style, and offering so you can meet that objective. Working with a limited budget means getting creative - figure out what you absolutely need now, in terms of content assets, then use the business you derive from using those asset to get you to the next stage, whether it’s those 60 images, or some other number.
Press. Simply put, it’s the attention given to someone (you, as a Founder or CEO) or something (your company, product, or design) by the media. Got a launch you want to talk about? A new product coming out? An exciting partnership or collaboration the world should know about and wondering “Should My Business Advertise?” You should go after press strategically, especially when you’ve got budgeting on the brain. Hire a communications specialist on a discreet or project basis to get the word out about your time-sensitive news. At STRUKTR Studios, for example, one offering that saves our clients thousands is the creation, distribution, and custom curated pitching of timely press. We’re not on retainer for months and months and that’s what our clients love about it - it’s a quick, effective way to get your brand talked about. Having run content at a Silicon Beach tech startup, I can tell you from experience that PR firms can easily charge retainers of $5,000-10,000. The cost is comparable in salary for hiring a dedicated PR staffperson in-house.
Should my business advertise with a blog? It’s a question a lot of entrepreneurs ask themselves. A blog benefits your business by way of Search Engine Optimization (SEO); entertaining and engaging your customers in a deep way; facilitating brand partnerships; and being a shareable tool to reach an audience greater than your own. If custom blog creation is beyond your budget, consider starting with content strategy. Work with a content marketing expert to have them devise a strategic approach to the types of content that will 1) interest your customer-base 2) be beneficial for SEO 3) more likely to be shared or cited by other blogs 4) best fit your social platform(s) of choice, and 5) present ideal opportunities for a PR burst. In fact, STRUKTR Studios was borne out of the idea that the content your brand offers can be just as engaging, entertaining, and useful as the content you yourself seek out in or on your favorite publications.
Still finding advertising and marketing beyond your budget? STRUKTR Studios has developed Content Creation Lab™. A disruptive workshop empowering female entrepreneurs with technical and creative skills to build beloved brands via high-quality content creation. Our curriculum is focused on you quickly developing competency in skills integral to content creation and building brands: Photography, Photo Editing, Video Editing, Pitching, Blogging, Instagram Strategy, Strategic Content Partnerships, etc. It positions female entrepreneurs to grow their brands faster and cheaper. Attend our next lab.