In the digital-first world that we live in, there have never been more options for getting your brand noticed, both on and offline. However, this also means that the market has never been more competitive and standing out in this increasingly crowded space has become a problem that all brands face.
According to a study by Deloitte, the average marketing budget in 2023 was roughly 13.6% of a company’s total budget in 2023. For large companies, this translates to astronomical sums and, in turn, extensive reach across all platforms at all times. But for smaller companies and those with less organic reach, this figure will not stretch very far at all.
Content marketers therefore need to be creative with how they use often very limited resources to get the most bang for their buck. In this blog, we share some tips for all our content marketing friends out there to help you maximize your impact even if you don’t have the budget to match. Let’s dive in!
How to market on a budget
1. Know your audience
Perhaps the most important thing you can do as a content marketer is to ensure understand your audience. Who your target audience is, what they’re looking for, and where they are likely to spend their time are arguably the most important considerations when designing your content marketing strategy.
Let’s use a quick example to explain. Say you’re in charge of a marketing campaign for a cruise company. You know that most of the people who are looking to go on a cruise are older, have disposable income, and are probably not as tech-savvy as their younger counterparts.
So, does it make sense to focus your content efforts around TikTok? No, of course not! Instead, it makes far more sense — and is a far better use of your time and resources — to target a platform like Facebook, where it is more likely that your audience is spending their time.
Figuring out where your audience engages with content is the first step but creating content that they actually want to engage with is just as important. Our cruise-goers are unlikely to want to see boat-based memes or short flashy videos full of effects and edits. They are much more likely to appreciate a list of the features, some well-taken photographs, and an itinerary of the trip you a trying to sell them.
Start with who, then figure out where, and finally focus on what — then you can start making the right content, for the right people, in the right place, and stop wasting your precious resources on content that won’t be seen by your target audience.
2. Leverage social media
Speaking of your Facebooks and your TikToks, social media is one of the most powerful tools in the thoughtful content marketer’s arsenal. It is the place to be when it comes to marketing and advertising spend across socials is expected to reach $219.8 billion in 2024.
The great thing about social media is that you don’t need to spend a penny to get yourself noticed.
But the great thing about social media is that you don’t need to spend a penny to get yourself noticed. While paid ads on social are still important, maximizing your organic reach can be just as effective for getting eyeballs on your services and products.
Now, a deep dive into social media marketing is a tad beyond the scope of this piece but oh wait, what’s this? There’s already a complete guide to social media marketing over on the Scribly blog? That’s right, we’ve got you covered! Take a gander at our in-depth article on the subject and you’ll be a social media whiz in no time!
3. Diversify through repurposing
Blogs are great and over here at Scribly, we know how to create engaging blog posts that drive traffic. But we also know that blogs aren’t the be-all and end-all when it comes to written content. Not everyone cares to sit down and read 1000 words on say, maximizing marketing impact with limited resources.
No, some people would rather have a breakdown straight to their inbox and others would prefer to look through a carousel of images on LinkedIn. And that’s where content repurposing comes in. Content repurposing refers to taking a piece of content that you’ve already produced, and then using the foundation you’ve built to split it off into many different types of content with relatively little time and effort.
Let’s take this blog as an example. With the words we’ve already written here, we can easily pull out the key points, add a new intro, and turn it into an email newsletter. We can then take those key points and overlay them onto some images to share on socials. We can even take those key points, whip them into a short voice script, and discuss them on our next podcast episode.
All of a sudden, this one piece of content has become four, each targeting a different type of potential customer through a different platform. It does take a bit of effort to reimagine your content but compared to creating something new for each purpose, the time and resource investment is night and day.
Start working smarter, not harder!
4. Create some evergreen content
One of the best ways to get the most out of your content is to ensure that it stays relevant long after it has been published. A big problem with the rapid cycle of engagement and disinterest we see today is that as soon as you’ve published a piece of content, you need to start working on the next one to keep your audience engaged and your brand in the conversation.
But if you’re able to create some pieces of content that still provide value months or even years after their publication, then you can continue to drive engagement and bring traffic to your site, all without having to lift a finger or use up any more of your limited marketing budget.
This is the concept behind evergreen content — or content that keeps on giving. Once again, we’ve got your back, so check out our full blog exploring what evergreen content is, its benefits for brands, and how you can create your very own!
5. Do what works
A massive part of marketing is figuring out what approach works at a given moment. This may be dictated by the whims of Google’s algorithm that month, the introduction of a new platform, or just a trend that people are engaging with.
You see it all the time in TV adverts. A brand comes out with a new ad that goes viral and has everyone talking, and the next day you see five ads in the exact same style from competing companies. The Cadbury’s gorilla ad is a great example, ushering in a new age of wacky, off-the-wall adverts for us all to “enjoy”.
Take the time to research what kind of content is prioritized by Google right now, what has people talking, and what your competitors are doing. It’s fine to ape what works, so long as you don’t completely rip it off!
6. Don’t be too afraid to use AI
Regardless of your feelings about artificial intelligence (AI), it has undoubtedly changed the way we create content. Tools like ChatGPT have allowed anyone to create vast amounts of content, all with very little time and effort investment.
So, it’s tempting to think, “Well, if I want to maximize my limited marketing resources, I should just use AI to create a ton of content.” And to that we would say, “Hold your horses!”
AI is a fantastic tool but it’s important to use it intelligently. Just pumping out thousands upon thousands of AI-generated words isn’t likely to get you far — Google still much prefers quality over quantity. What it is good for is streamlining some of your content creation processes.
Use AI to help you come up with ideas, proofread your work, or make small adjustments to your tone and word choice. AI can’t replace human marketers but it can make our jobs easier and free up some resources to focus on other tasks. Use it wisely and a whole new world of possibilities opens up.
Use AI to help you come up with ideas, proofread your work, or make small adjustments to your tone and word choice. AI
We know we’ve already banged on about it enough in this piece but if you’re looking for even more content marketing tips and tricks, head over to the Scribly blog! It’s packed full of great resources to help you make the most of your marketing budget and truly maximize your content marketing impact on a budget.