Yup – we all know about marketing.
Sounds great, but it takes time and money to get it right.
Sure – there’s advertising.
Pretty straightforward, but again it’s time and money.
But what if your business is totally bootstrapped, a side project to your day job, or you just don’t have the funding to sink into marketing and advertising?
If only there was a way to get some exposure for your business that doesn’t break the bank…
Well, if you at least have a little bit of time to spare – here are a few hacks that you can use to get your business out into the wild, world of the internet!
Respond to Press Queries!
Let’s face it.
Most fledgling businesses simply cannot afford to shell out the big bucks for a PR agency.
However, there’s no doubt that they would still benefit from a few good press mentions.
Luckily, there are actually services that will connect you directly with journalists – and it doesn’t cost a penny.
If you have never heard of any of these – you are in for a treat.
Here are a few highly recommended services:
Each of these services basically facilitates the relationship between Journalists (the press!) and sources (your biz!) to help writers find the supporting resources that they need to create an amazing article.
This doesn’t mean instant access to huge media mentions – but it can result in some really great press that only requires a bit of time on your end.
Basically, all you need to do is tune in to these channels and listen for opportunities that are related to what you do.
However, you should be aware that these journalists aren’t desperate for responses. In fact, most queries get upwards of 50 responses (depending on industry) and usually only 2 or 3 will actually make it into the article.
That being said, here are a few tips to help your success:
- Demonstrate your authority to speak on the subject right away. Journalists want to use reputable sources for their work.
- Respond directly to their query. If you are off-topic or just offer to provide insight at a later time – you are making their job more difficult.
- Give them something quotable – most of these journalists are on a deadline so save them the back and forth!
Leverage Online Directories
Another incredibly easy way to get more exposure for your business is by simply listing your company on business directories.
This is a great opportunity to get your business in front of an audience on a website that has already done the work on building an engaged audience.
This hack becomes even more appealing from an SEO perspective for two reasons:
- New companies and websites will unlikely have a strong SEO foundation that helps them actually appear in search engine results.
- Google-compliant directories are an awesome way to score a backlink for your website, which will contribute to your overall DA and search engine rankings.
There are literally hundreds of online directory opportunities for this hack – but let’s look at an example from an SEO perspective.
Jasmine Directory is a perfect example of an online directory that has been around since 2009, which aims to list educational resources and businesses for easy public access. It is based out of Valley Cottage, NY, and they manually add websites to their directory, as well as accept submissions for review.
However, what’s important to note here is that it is a Google-compliant directory.
Essentially, this means that they use editorial discretion to permit or deny which businesses they allow in their directory listings.
This is important from an SEO perspective because it means that your backlinks will not be penalized and will actually provide the SEO juice that implies value from a backlink.
So before you go running out and listing your business on every directory you can find – it is important to use your own discretion to only backlink from reputable directories. Otherwise, you may actually be penalized, which could hurt your overall DA and search engine rankings.
Start Guest Posting
Another clever hack to boost exposure for your business can be to guest post on important topics related to what you do.
Guest posting is a fairly easy process that really only requires a bit of outreach and some time creating awesome content.
The most important element of success for guest posting is leading with value for your audience.
If you do it right – it creates a win-win-win situation.
Win for the publication because it gets to publish free top-quality content.
Win for the audience because they get useful and interesting content.
Win for your business because you get exposure to an engaged audience.
However, if you do it wrong – your content will seem spammy, self-promotional, and probably never accepted by an editor.
I wrote a guide on everything you need to know about guest posting, but the single most important element of doing it well is to always focus on creating awesome content as your primary goal.
Exposure for your business will be implicit in those efforts.
If you create great content – people will be more inclined to check you out and see what you do.
It will also help you establish your expertise and authority within your industry.
Nobody wants to read an advertisement disguised as an article.
Instead, focus on sharing something useful and you will enjoy all of the benefits of guest posting!