Whether you are a startup or running a thriving business, the most common advice that you would get regarding customer acquisition is to spend a substantial amount on advertising and marketing. While this approach may have worked well for many businesses in the past, today’s digital business world is all about reaching out to customers in a more personalized and unique manner. Acquiring customers does not necessarily involve spending a large amount of money, simple strategies such as social media networking can be fruitful for engaging your prospective customers. Have a look at the following five inexpensive ways to acquire customers that will actually work for your business!

Start Off with Your Local Community and Social Network

It is easier to acquire customers from your local community and social network since you are familiar with their demographics and psychographics. Pitching your product/service to people you have known for years would also help you in getting honest feedback about your business. So the first step towards acquiring customers is to promote yourself in the local community. While there are a number of ways to do that, you can use catchy brochures, posters and stickers to market yourself. Look out for potential customers in your social network and offer them your product/service for free to see how they respond to it. You can then improve it based on their suggestions before selling it to other customers.

Blogging and YouTube are Powerful Mediums

Customers these days read reviews and blogs about a business before making a buying decision. Reach out to the bloggers who have huge fan followings and offer them free samples/trials of your product/service. Invite them to your launch events and anniversary celebrations. You can also send out thoughtful gifts to them. Such gestures would get you positive reviews from bloggers and consequently a number of customers. YouTube is yet another powerful medium for acquiring customers. If for instance you intend to sell your new range of eye cosmetics, posting video tutorials of party, casual and festive makeup looks with your products on YouTube would create hype for your brand and would instantly get you customers.

Incentivize the First Few Customers to Bring in New Ones

Who doesn’t like discounts, incentives and rewards? Give existing customers a reason to be your brand advocates and they would bring in their family members, friends and acquaintances to shop from you. Bond with your first customers to acquire new ones. Show them gratitude and offer them rewards for spreading positive word about your business. For example, you can give a free product/service upgrade to a customer who brings in three new customers. Free dinner coupons, discount vouchers, loyalty cards and gift hampers of your best products are popular ways to incentivize your customers to bring word of mouth referrals. For loyal customers who go overboard in praising you all over social media, you can give away special and memorable gifts as a token of appreciation.

Direct Mail and Door to Door Advertising Still Works

While direct mail and door to door marketing may sound like obsolete ways of promoting a business, if done smartly they can actually help you in attracting customers. Based on your target audience’s psychographics an effective marketing strategy can be devised. For instance, if you are running a pizza place, you can send your menu, delivery details and combo deals in mail to people in the local neighborhood. For door to door marketing, choose a time when people are back from work, are not in a rush and have time to listen to you. With a little research on your target audience, you can make these traditional marketing gimmicks work wonders for your business.

A Personalized Experience is What Every Customer Wants

Brands that focus on providing a personalized experience to their customers don’t find it hard to acquire new ones. If you want to earn customers for life, focus on offering a personalized and pleasing customer experience. Serving customers according to their preferences and valuing their needs would definitely win them over. If for example, you are running a clothing brand, giving your customers the choice to select the fabric of their choice, colors, cuts and changing the design patterns according to their liking would be a practice that would make you stand out from your competitors and is likely to get you more customers.