Building a successful small business requires marketing your products, services, and lingerie store brand.
After all, no matter how high-quality your merchandise, your company can only grow and thrive if people know you exist.
The marketing industry is filled with a wide range of strategies and ideas for reaching new customers and engaging with established ones, all at different price points. It’s easy to get flustered by the overwhelming amount of information out there but remember that ultimately it all comes down to your own marketing planning and budget.
Most marketing experts suggest companies that have been in business between one and five years spend between 12 and 20 percent of gross or projected revenue on marketing. These emerging businesses are looking to develop brand recognition with a new audience and capture new market share. Once your brand is established, marketing expenses can usually drop to between 6 and 12 percent of revenue.
So how much should your lingerie business budget for marketing?
Here are some things to think about as you decide on a marketing budget for your lingerie business.
Know Your Prospective Customers
Where are your customers most likely to see your message? Survey current clients to find out where they first heard about your business. Was it online, over social media, or through a more traditional advertising channel? This information will help you plan where to spend the bulk of your funds.
You can also learn more about your current customer base by having those people opt in to your email newsletters or follow you on social media sites. Email newsletter providers will slice and dice data about the people who read your messages -- including demographics like age, location, and even income level -- so that you know what customers to continue targeting.
Social media sites will provide you similar insights into who is following your lingerie business and how often they are interacting with what you post.
Know Your Goals
You need money to grow your brand, but until your lingerie business really takes off, you’ll have little money to fund marketing efforts. That is why it is so important to plan how to maximize every part of your budget. What are your short and long term objectives for your business? Think about where you would like to be at the end of the quarter, at the end of the year, and three years from now.
Marketing experts suggest entrepreneurs think of marketing as an investment in the company rather than as an expense. After all, every dollar spent on marketing your business should bring in a return on investment, eventually.
You still want a solid strategy though. Simply spending the money won’t yield returns. You want to be sure you develop a comprehensive plan and spend every dollar wisely.
Know Your Costs
You are going to need to spend money on your website, social media campaigns, traditional advertising, branding efforts, and promotional events. You can choose between free, inexpensive, and costly efforts in each category.
Decide what will help you attract your target demographic and spend your money in that category. Use free or budget-friendly options, such as hiring a college intern to handle your marketing content, promoting products via social media, or joining a local networking group to help market your business in other areas.
Don’t be afraid to spend some money on marketing though – particularly if you use automation tools that give you data on how consumers are reacting to your messaging.
Know The Trends
Adopting new technologies, such as Facebook Live, Instagram, or Snapchat, can be extremely helpful in marketing your lingerie business in a budget friendly way. But don’t forget traditional marketing approaches.
Small businesses can often purchase advertising in local publications or on local radio stations without breaking the bank. When you use both techniques in tandem you can get a lot of bang for your buck!
Once you have developed your marketing plan, revisit it often and track your return on investment. Have patience, but don’t be afraid to be flexible when you need to be.
Above all, remember that marketing efforts should not be an afterthought.
We’ve all heard the saying “You have to spend money to make money.” This is especially true when you are building awareness for your lingerie business from the ground up.