10 most innovate ways to promote your business

Today the marketing field is vast and diverse; marketers have to pay attention to and understand offline and online opportunities as well as challenges, and be adaptable in their approach and methodology. We have all heard of social media, blogging and email newsletters. But what other options do marketers have to elevate their business above scores of similar companies?

In this post we offer our top 10 most innovative ways to promote a business. Let us know your thoughts!

 1.    Astroturfing
Named after the artificial grass, Astroturfing is a marketing plan designed to attract consumers who would be turned off by more obvious campaigns. The idea is to make the campaign look spontaneous, like a grass-root effort. It usually involves companies paying popular bloggers to ‘randomly’ mention their names or products, so that what is actually a promotion looks like a genuine endorsement. If you’re in the manufacturing business, you can offer your products to bloggers and chances are they will review them online, giving you additional exposure.

2. Podcasting
Podcasting is a great way to make information accessible and sharable. A podcast is a sound recording in the form of a short clip where you can discuss your company and/or any industry related news and opinion, which is made available to stream in real time or download at a later date.

The podcasts may include any special events about to take place, behind the scenes interviews, the latest news about your company, and so on. You can produce them yourself if you have someone with a pleasant voice, otherwise it might be a good idea to hire a professional voiceover artist, as the quality of the recording is almost as important here as the content.

This guide will take you through the mechanics of podcast recording.

 3.    Make A Viral Video
Definitely easier said than done, but it’s worth trying – one viral video can catapult your business into internet stardom and beyond. Here’s a good guide to give you some initial ideas.

 4.    Comment On Other Blogs With Constructive Feedback And Get Free Exposure
Producing content is essential, but not enough if you want to utilise the full potential of your company’s online presence. Use your expertise to help the online community by finding solid industry blogs and commenting on the most popular posts. This approach is mutually beneficial – you get more positive online exposure and enrich the blogosphere whilst paving the way for future guest blogging.

 5.    Guest Blogging
Guest blogging is a great opportunity for a small business to show off its expertise and have its voice heard by a larger audience. Make sure you choose your blogs carefully, though, so that you don’t end up accidentally endorsing a message that might be harmful to your business.

6.    QR Codes
QR technology has been around for a while now but not many SMEs seem to be using it. QR codes are a fun way to interact with your brand, being made even more interesting as they involve the Internet of Things, a trend connecting the physical world with the internet.

You can print the codes on pretty much anything: business cards, receipts, signage, print advertising and brochures, product packaging and so on. To maximise the value of the experience, in your QR code include something of value to your customers, such as assembly instructions, videos suggesting how to best use the product, or coupons with discounts on future purchases.

 7.    Submit Articles to Article Directories
As with guest blogging, article directories offer an unmissable additional avenue for your content’s exposure and increasing your credibility as an expert in your business. Ezine Articles is the largest and most respected article directory online, and their extensive category list makes it possible to submit articles concerning any topic you might specialise in. Inbound.org is especially good for submitting marketing articles. To see more, a list of the top 50 article directories can be found here.

 8.    Find Speaking Opportunities
Speaking is great not only for networking in person, but it also puts you in a position of authority by default. Look for local conferences and events where you can register your company, and if there aren’t any in your area, take the initiative and organise a small conference yourself for your local business leaders.

9.    Give Away Promotional USB Sticks
Forget business cards that never seem to stick around people’s wallets – USB sticks have actual value as they serve a concrete purpose. Add your branding and contact details and chances are your logo will reach the eyes of not only the lucky person you have given it to, but the ones around them, too.

10.   Sponsor a Great Cause / Volunteer
Sponsoring and volunteering is undoubtedly a win-win situation – you build a name for your company whilst benefiting your community. It is also a good way to embed yourself in your local community, even if you like to think of your business as global. It is often surprising to see how far local contacts can get you! Don’t forget to make some noise around your activities: write a captivating press release and send it to your local journalists, use social media to promote the event and spread the word by sending a newsletter to all of your contacts.