Chances are even if you mostly win customers through word of mouth and other referrals you still need and use money to keep things going favorably. Here are a few expenses you might want to consider when developing a marketing budget:
Networking event costs
Often there is a dinner or lunch or just and admission cost. Other networking groups have annual fees or dues. Do your research and find the ones that fit your budget and your target audience. Ask around target customers and find out where they go. Some local Louisville networking events include NAWBO, BNI, No Rules Networking and Women In Networking.
You’re going to need to build relationships and over food or coffee is a very popular casual way to do it. Around Kentuckiana I’ve found a lot of great coffee shops that give just enough privacy to have a quiet conversation.
Sending Thank You Letters/Cards
Postage, cards and envelopes cost money. Not a lot, but budget for it. As ‘bang for your buck’ goes, a handwritten note is one of the best!
Even if you’re using a free CMS like WordPress or Joomla you still have to pay for hosting and a web domain. If you get them from a place like Godaddy, this should cost you less than $100/year, but all the same it’s worth budgeting for.
Still one of the most universal marketing tools out there. We’ve not yet figured out a way to completely get rid of this one. GotPrint can get you cards for less than 10 cents a card. There are some great local printing deals in Louisville too, don’t be afraid to quote out your needs.
This could be buying marketing books, paying to attend a seminar or paying for hands on help from a marketing coach.
If you’re speaking at an event, you’ll want to have handouts that promote your company. Even if you’re printing them yourself, ink and paper costs money.