Re-opening Your Business: 5 Tips for Designing a Cost-Effective Marketing Plan

As businesses in various industries are slowly permitted to reopen throughout the country, many entrepreneurs are wondering how they can adapt their marketing strategies for this current phase of the pandemic recovery. Naturally, you want to let people know that you’re open for business again, but you don’t want to overspend on marketing, especially if your profits will be lower than usual this year.


These tips will guide you through the process of outlining a cost-effective marketing plan that can reach new customers and clients without going over your budget.


Revise Your Business Budget


Before you start brainstorming, you’ll need to revise your business budget to determine how much you can invest in marketing over the next few months. Re-opening your business and making changes to your marketing strategy will definitely require some up-front investment, even if your aim is to develop a budget-friendly advertising plan. That’s why it’s important to seek out potential funding sources or grants before you put your new approach into action, especially if your overall revenue has dipped since the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic.


For instance, you may still be able to apply for assistance under the CARES Act. You could also look into applying for an SBA Express Bridge Loan or for support through the Main Street Business Lending Program.


Work with Consultants or Coaches


If this is your first time handling this type of situation, reach out to others who’ve previously navigated it successfully. For example, the highly qualified team at Vast Action, Inc works with their clients to discuss each situation, budget, and make a client outreach plan based on what’s working now and has worked in similar, previous environments. This is an uncertain time for everyone, but receiving input from experts can help you rise to meet the occasion!


Analyze Customer Communications


In order to design a truly cost-effective marketing plan, you need to analyze your existing marketing and communications efforts. Where do customers and clients tend to find your business? Do they connect with you through your website, social media accounts, or respond to deals and promos sent out by direct mail or email? While you may want to expand into new channels if you can afford to do so, this is also a good time to focus on tactics that have a track record of boosting sales.


Invest in Low-Cost Advertising


When your aim is to save money on marketing, look towards digital initiatives. You may need to consider using your business blog as a content marketing vehicle, or spending more time on social media marketing. Forbes also suggests email marketing as a fantastic way to keep your customers and clients in the loop without spending big - just make it easy to sign-up and ensure your emails don’t sound like spam.


While digital marketing is generally quite cost-effective, don’t overlook the power of direct mailing, either! According to BusinessNewsDaily, direct mail marketing provides a high return on investment and may be able to reach a wider demographic than online advertising.


Publicize Your Safety Protocols


Even if you do not interact with your customers or clients in a retail setting, part of your new marketing strategy should involve informing patrons of any safety protocols that your company has implemented. For example, if you’ve allowed employees to shift to remote work and begun hosting virtual events rather than in-person gatherings, publicizing this information will show that you care about the wellbeing of your staff and clients alike. It’s definitely good PR, so make sure to incorporate these updates into your marketing materials - it won’t drive up your spending!


In times like these, it can be difficult to determine how to best market your products and services. Furthermore, figuring out how much to spend can be tricky when money is tight. With these essential tips, you’ll be well-prepared to execute a relevant and affordable marketing strategy for your company. 

Photo via Unsplash
Article by Naomi Johnson,

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