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Zero Cost Marketing – Can You Promote Your Business For Free? Part 2: Web Content

In this post we’ll discuss web content as a way of marketing your business at no direct cost.

This is Part 2 of our series “Zero Cost Marketing”, where we suggest ways you can promote your business with little to no budget. If you want to start at the beginning read Zero Cost Marketing Part 1 – Discounts & Samples.

Since every business has different attributes and needs, the suggestions are presented in no order of preference. Some will be more relevant to your business than others. We’ll leave it to you to decide.

So, getting straight to it, our second suggestion to promote your business at zero cost is:

2. Work Your Web Content

Let’s Start With A fairytale:

Once upon a time, long, long ago, there was a land where Information was locked away in large castles called Libraries and guarded by fearsome dragons called Librarians. When the people of that land wanted access to the Information, they first had to pass the “Challenge of the Limited Opening Hours” to enter the Library, then, once inside, tackle the “Conundrum of Returned to the Wrong Shelf”. Finally they had to present a magic token called a Library Card. Having passed these tests, they were allowed – for a short and precious time – to be the Keeper of the Information, before returning it to be passed on to a new Keeper. That land was called “Before The World Wide Web”.

knight seeks access to a castle where information is held while a dragon circles

That scenario all feels a little surreal and storybook-ish in the 2020s when most of the world has easy access to information 24×7 in the form of web content. Since its public launch in 1993, the World Wide Web has acted as a source of public knowledge in a way which could not have been imagined previously.

There are multiple reasons why content is published on websites. But usually one of the underlying aims – especially for businesses – is self-promotion. The best part about content creation is that you can do it for free. So Web Content is number 2 on our list of great ways to promote your business at zero cost.

What Does Web Content Do For Your Business?

Your website is often the consumer’s first real introduction to your business so it is important that its content works hard. Good content:

  1. Explains your business to the visitor. Clearly laid out web pages will tell the visitor exactly what your business is about. They can describe not just your products or services but also your company culture and ethos. It’s your chance to make yourself stand out. But a word of warning… people can be wary of something too different so unless it is a deliberate marketing tactic to present yourself as the outlyer, moderation is the watchword.
  2. Presents the benefits of your offering – Your website is a great opportunity to promote your product, explaining its features and its unique advantages over the competition. A picture paints a thousand words, so if yours is a physical product, consumers will appreciate plenty of high quality images or video clearly displaying the features you describe. You may also wish to provide a downloadable PDF brochure containing details which would make your web pages too text-heavy, or presenting demonstration and aspirational images. Case studies can be a great way to show the value of your product, so if you can use real life examples of satisfied customers, they can be a very persuasive marketing tool.
  1. Demonstrates your professionalism – Despite the common phrase most of us do, at least partly, judge a book by its cover. This also applies to your website, which will often form a consumer’s crucial first impression of your business. Make sure that your web content is not only clear and concise, but also grammatically correct and free of spelling errors and typos which could create a poor overall impression. Generally it is a good idea to avoid overly formal language, which can sound pompous and off-putting. On the other hand, it is normally best to avoid slang and you should be wary of too many colloquialisms. A good guideline is to “write it as you would say it”, bearing in mind the previous points.
Hand drawn diagram of well laid out web content.

Well-organized, informative web content can make the visitor’s experience of your website a good and productive one and give a great overall impression of your business.

  1. Establishes your authority – Your business will have more credibility in the eyes of consumers if it is clear that you know what you are talking about. Visitors often know a bit about the subject in hand before they come to your website, so make sure your website pages are informative, relevant and accurate. Blog posts are a great way of presenting helpful information to establish your industry knowledge and build consumer trust. By demonstrating your expertise and offering information which is valuable to your audience you can build a following and become a go-to resource in your field.
  2. Shows that you understand your audience – With appropriate content you can demonstrate that you appreciate the needs, challenges and interests of your target customers, and create engagement. Consumers are more likely to deal with a business which they feel understands them. So think carefully about who you are targeting and make sure your content addresses their concerns. You should also consider your content’s tone of voice and make sure it is a good fit for your desired audience.
  3. Leads the consumer on a journey – Your website’s ultimate aim is to attract customers. Well-crafted web content can guide prospects through the buyer journey and encourage them to take desired actions, such as making a purchase, signing up for a service, or contacting your business. Ensure your site layout and content anticipate and handle visitor needs at each stage of their journey and provide calls-to-action within your content to convert visitors into paying customers.
  1. Encourages audience engagement – By encouraging comments, social media shares, and discussion around your web content, you can build relationships with your customers and create a dialogue. Respond promptly to as many comments as you can, as this shows that you are responsive and actively consider what your readers have to say. They are more likely to be engaged if they feel that their point of view matters.
  2. Increases your visibility – Optimised web content with targeted keywords can improve your search engine rankings, making it easier for people to find your business online and bringing organic traffic to your website. Consider which keywords consumers will use when searching for a business like yours and include them in your content. SEO is an important subject in itself so we will discuss it separately in an upcoming post.
  3. Generates leads – Blog posts, articles and downloadable resources can be used to capture leads. By offering valuable content such as a PDF download in exchange for contact information, you can build a database of potential customers who have expressed interest in your products or services. This enables you to nurture these leads and hopefully convert them into paying customers over time.
  4. Supports your other marketing efforts – Make maximum use of your your web content by sharing it on social media platforms, included in your email newsletter or repurposing it for other marketing channels. By using it across different platforms, you can expand your reach, amplify your message, and drive more traffic to your website.

Final Thoughts

It is important to recognise your website’s potential as a promotional tool in its own right. It can be a great low-budget way for you to establish your business’s professionalism and to differentiate it and your product from the competition.

Although it takes time, effort and some creativity to generate good content you can do this at no direct cost so it is a worthwhile exercise, especially when finances are tight. By creating valuable and relevant content, you can enhance your online visibility, establish your expertise, nurture leads, and ultimately drive business growth.

We hope you enjoyed this post. If you found it useful, please feel free to share it or leave a comment. Or take a look at our other posts.

If there’s anything you’d like to discuss with us don’t hesitate to get in touch. An initial chat is free and without obligation.

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