Content marketing on a startup budget

Content marketing on a startup budget

Four fun and easy strategies to promote your brand.

What comes to mind when you hear ‘content marketing’? An endless sea of euro signs? A hefty downloadable guide filled with complex formulas and jargon? If you’re envisioning something beyond your startup’s reach, luckily for you, you’re wrong. Content marketing is a flexible set of tools that your startup can’t afford not to use.

Here are some simple ways to help you break into the world of content marketing:

Invest in Cost-Effective Content

Digital marketing has opened up a world of affordable content creation that can help you gain visibility and build authority in your field. Start a blog on your website where you talk about your company’s niche and showcase your brand’s personality. One to two posts a month of around 500 words is enough to show that you’re active in your industry. Infographics are also quick to make, and can be made for free on dozens of different websites. Short promotional videos, podcasts and industry-related articles are other affordable ways to get creative.

Part of keeping costs down is knowing how to create your content efficiently. If there’s someone on your team that enjoys writing, consider giving them a handful of hours a month to work on the blog. A team member with basic video and audio editing skills can do a video or podcast. In the case where time at your startup is just as tight as money, consider looking outside your company. Outsourcing may feel out of reach, but paying a freelancer or a company to do basic content marketing can be more cost-effective than doing it yourself—as professionals, we are good at what we do and can likely get the job done much quicker than one of your team members.

Attract Free Content

After all, what’s better than cheap content? There are many fun ways to attract free, customer-submitted material. Find out what platforms your customers use and host competitions to get them to submit content through those platforms. Are your customers Instagrammers? Ask for photos or videos of their favourite products. Tweeters? Have them tweet using the company hashtag about why they love your company. Make the competitions as accessible and relevant as possible to make submitting easy. HubSpot provides a good step-by-step guide to help you run a user-generated content campaign.

Use Your Content Wisely

Social media is free, and it also happens to be the best platform to share your content. Make sure your company is active on the top platforms and post all of your original content and customer-submitted content to your accounts. Use witty captions to grab the attention of other users, and tack on some popular hashtags to integrate your content into a larger conversation. Figure out what time your audience is online and post to get maximum exposure. Share relevant articles, memes, videos and infographics from other sources to complement your original content, always crediting the source and using it as an opportunity to engage with these companies. Repurpose your content on social media—facts from a blog post can be turned into an infographic, an infographic can become a short animation.

Join Forces with Other Startups

Two (or three) marketing budgets are better than one. Collaborate with related, non-competitor startups in your area to help promote each other’s content. Feature each other’s posts on your website and routinely link to one another’s content. Invest together in some fun, original swag that can sport both of your companies’ logos. Host an event together—a workshop, webinar or networking drink can help get both of your names out in the community.

Content marketing can work for any budget. Figure out what low-cost strategies work best for your brand and start promoting.

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