If you run your own business, it’s a given that you want it to be successful. However, even if you provide wonderful products and services and you offer the best kind of customer service around, your company will still not thrive as well as it could unless you have good publicity.

Being that almost 50 percent of all businesses close their doors within the first five years, we certainly understand why you may not have a really large budget for advertising and marketing. However, we’re hoping that this article will give you a few ideas on how you can get some good publicity for your company, free of charge:

Do some guest writing. One way to network with other businesses is to offer to be a guest writer on their website’s blog. This can be a win/win effort because while they can get some new content on their website for free, you, in turn, can introduce your company and platform to an entirely new audience.

Keep up with your local media alert calendars. Although you can pay to place an ad in your local newspaper or record one for a local radio station, one thing that a lot of people overlook is that fact that most media outlets have a community calendar where you can post upcoming events that are of interest to the public for free. In most cases, all you need to do is submit a press release 4-6 weeks before the particular event takes place.

Go to conferences. Another way to drum up some free publicity is by attending local and regional conferences that directly relate to your company’s vision or industry. As a matter of fact, many conferences solicit keynote speakers and panelists (some even pay you to participate). To find out which ones in your area are looking for some “local experts”, go to your favorite search engine and put “guest speakers wanted” along with your city and state.

Sponsor a community service project. If there is a local non-profit organization or community service project that you really believe in, why not call them up and offer to be a sponsor? You can donate some of your products or services, or even some of your company’s T-shirts and other items for them to use as giveaways. In exchange, they will usually list your logo on their website where people can “click” to get more information about your company.

Create a community service award. Speaking of community service projects, something else that you can do to make people more aware of your company is to create a community service award. It can go out to an individual who you feel has been a great influence within the community or you can even ask people via your website or newsletter to nominate a person. From the Top 10 names given, you can post them on the website and have people vote. It’s a really smart way to draw traffic to your website while also encouraging people to celebrate those who are making a difference in the area. It’s definitely one of the best ways to get publicity, for sure.

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