5 Cost Effective Marketing Strategies For Small Businesses | NPI


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5 Cost Effective Marketing Strategies For Small Businesses

 November 14, 2023 |  Business Tips, Marketing, Social Media |  money management, Google, Facebook, email marketing, business website

By Sydney Bailey, NPI, Inc.'s Marketing Director

Seasoned business owners know that every industry experiences ebbs and flows. There are times when the phones are constantly ringing and the calendar is packed. On the flip side, there are stretches where work is more scarce. It’s often during the slow seasons where cutting back on expenditures is a natural impulse, but business owners should be careful not to handicap their marketing efforts.

Marketing is critical for reaching new clients and keeping your business top-of-mind for your established referral sources, so you should be hesitant to cut your marketing spend when business is down. With that said, there are ways you can be more intentional with your marketing budget. If you find yourself limited on funds, here are a few cost-effective marketing strategies worth exploring. 

Refine Your Communication Skills
Standing out from your competition is critical when business slows down. For some owners, explaining to prospective clients exactly what sets their business apart can be difficult. While effective marketing and networking can make your phone ring, it won’t do much good if the person answering the call doesn’t conduct themselves with enough confidence to actually book the job. 

With this in mind, business owners and office staff should take the time to rehearse their delivery over the phone and in person. Practicing with friends, family, and other trusted confidants can build assurance for business owners who aren’t used to conversing in these environments, and although some personality types may be perfectly comfortable closing a sale, feedback through this process can lead to further improvement and increased closed rates. 

Closing a sale is a skill that can be acquired and enhanced just like any other. For inspectors, don’t assume that a client understands the process of a standard home inspection. Figure out a way to explain in layman’s terms what you’ll do on the property, how long it will take, and when they can expect their report. Mapping out the experience like this should help establish trust early, and it’ll lead to more jobs! 

Rediscover Email Marketing
Email marketing continues to be one of the most effective marketing outreach strategies across all industries, and the great thing about email? It’s free! Review past campaigns and make some updates by refreshing the messaging, think of catchy new subject lines, or try adding a new promotion. 

One thing to keep in mind with email marketing is that outdated emailing lists can tarnish your email’s sender reputation. This could result in your messages being sent to spam folders. Be sure to regularly update your email list by removing defunct addresses and adding any new ones gained through networking. To learn more about making a great email marketing campaign, read on right here

Try Out a Timely Promotion
Speaking of promotions, coupons and discounts are a tried and true way to bring in clients who might be on the fence for a product or service. We understand that the last thing business owners want to do in a slow season is discount their services. However, what’s better? Booking a job at a $50 discount or booking no jobs at all? If business is slower, create urgency by launching a limited-time promotion. 

If you have a new service, create a campaign explaining its relevance to your local area or tie it to an upcoming holiday. Although business owners should never devalue the importance of their services, promotions with a clear message and an expiration date can work by bringing attention to your lesser-known services. 

Refresh Your Social Media
Next, social media is an area that tends to fall off quickly whenever business owners get busy, but building an audience base here can be valuable for reinforcing relationships and generating attention strategically. The other nice thing about managing social media is its cost: posting on social media is another task you can do for practically free! 

To step up engagement on social media, consider posting pictures of your team on the job or generate an educational infographic about one of your services. Studies show that people connect to a business when they see peoples’ faces, and infographics are known to quickly grab attention. If you’re interested in taking an easy first step, here are some things to consider about producing videos for social media. Just don’t get hung up on making every second perfect! Homemade pictures and videos can feel authentic, making your business come across as more trustworthy and approachable. 

Make Use of Your Satisfied Customers
Customers Finally, business owners who have already impressed their customers can rely on their past track record to bring in new clients. In short: call attention to your 5-star reviews! 

Too many businesses neglect their Google and Facebook business pages, but a high four- or five-star business with tons of reviews instills so much more confidence than a competitor with a low score. Build it into your wrap-up process for every job, and make it easy for clients to leave a review, then re-post those positive reviews on social media and display them on your website. Satisfied customers can become advocates for your company with just a few steps, and luckily, we’ve already discussed some great ways to get reviews with more consistency!

There are so many ways to continue marketing for little to no cost - and this list is by no means exhaustive! For more ideas on expanding your marketing strategy, reach out to the NPI marketing team today.

Did you know that NPI franchisees benefit from weekly blogs, expert website design, top notch SEO, marvelous email marketing, eye-popping graphic design, and personal one-on-one coaching (just to name a few things)? Learn more about the benefits of franchising with NPI by requesting your free info packet!


About the Author
Sydney Bailey, Marketing Director
Sydney specializes in creative marketing strategy and project management. In her current role, she leads the NPI marketing department in implementing new initiatives to increase business for franchisees in our network. With experience in art direction, public relations, and brand development, she also served as the organization’s in-house graphic and web designer during her first five years with NPI. Sydney continues to support our franchisees on a daily basis with their overall marketing strategy needs.

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