By Business Next Door
Is there such a thing as free advertising? Yes!
While you’ll have to put some time and effort into promoting your business, it’s possible to advertise your business without shelling out a single cent on ad spending. However, not all free advertising for businesses is created equal.
At Nextdoor, we think all business owners should have the opportunity to promote their business and increase their brand awareness. That’s why our experts have created this list of some of the top ways to promote a business through free advertising options. In this short guide, we’ll go over the top 12 places to advertise for free with minimal effort and maximum return on your time and energy.
A quick note: This list draws from many different mediums with varied target audiences. The most important factor to remember when advertising is to meet your customers where they are.
If they’re local shoppers, consider avenues that target your neighborhood (like Nextdoor). If your customers seek out your professional services through how-to videos or advice, consider online video advertising such as streaming channels (like YouTube).
By keeping your customers in mind, you can ensure your advertising efforts will be worth it.
- Create a Nextdoor profile
- Sign up for Google My Business
- Claim a Bing Places profile
- Get listed on Yellow Pages
- Update your White Pages listing
- Claim a Yelp business page
- Sign up for Angie’s List
- Claim a Foursquare listing
- Create a Facebook business page
- Grow Pinterest followers
- Develop YouTube content
- Create a blog and start email marketing
- Use social media as a networking tool
How to advertise your business for free
1. Create a Nextdoor profile
As a local business owner, it’s important to connect to new and current customers in your immediate area – your neighborhood. To that end, Nextdoor is the go-to digital space for engaging with your nearby community and a key platform for advertising your business for free.
Take advantage of Nextdoor’s free advertising for local businesses leaders by creating a Business Page. Consider:
- Customize your Business Page with photos, information about your product and services, and your business’s unique story. Don’t forget to include a link to your website or digital storefront.
- Engaging with your community through free Business Posts. Keep your neighbors up to date about new initiatives and promotional discounts, or ask them about their changing needs.
- Running promotions in specific neighborhoods through Local Deals. With Local Deals, you can choose the neighborhoods where you want your deal to be seen and reach customers at a ZIP code level. Local Deals are displayed on Nextdoor’s most visible areas including a neighbor’s newsfeed.
After you have one recommendation, you’ll also start showing up in neighbors’ local search results. From there, how much you engage on Nextdoor is completely up to you.
2. Sign up for Google My Business
If you’re a small business, you don’t have to run Google ad campaigns to show up on the first page of Google search results. Want a marketing secret? Google actually wants people to find relevant, local search results when they look for terms like “Plumber Tampa” or “Boise Bakery” on Google Search or in Google Maps.
You don’t have to invest in a big marketing campaign to improve your odds. Instead:
- Create a Google business profile with Google My Business
- Input your address, contact information, and hours of operation
- Add your company logo or an exterior photo
- Register your business with Google Places so it can be found on Google Maps and become an easier search for potential customers.
As you start to show up in results, you can also use Google’s analytic tools to find out which keywords are driving traffic to your site. Google Analytics uses this information to make further changes to your description and website to improve your local search engine rankings.
3. Claim a Bing Places profile
After Google, Bing is the second most popular search engine. It’s free and easy to create a Bing Places Business Profile.
Just claim and verify your business listing, then start updating your information. Once you’re set up, you’ll be able to start capturing traffic from Bing, too.
4. Get listed on Yellow Pages
If you still receive a phone book from your municipality, you’re probably more inclined to use it as a doorstop than a business directory. However, there are plenty of reasons to list your business in the Yellow Pages:
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