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I was recently one of the 55 million people a year to visit my "local" outlet mall. This wasn't the first time I've shopped at the outlets, but this time I went with a different purpose: to determine how much money outlet shopping can save me.
As consumers hit the malls this holiday season, some are experienced shoppers, having weathered many years of finding just the right gift at just the right price. Nonetheless, whether novice or seasoned veteran, it’s always smart to arm yourself with timely shopping tips.
More people are thinking green, and there’s no better place to "go green" than in your wallet. Thankfully, small changes that can add up to equal a significant monthly saving.
The majority of small business owners think the current economic downturn is threatening their ability to survive or is at least "significantly" affecting their business. Since marketing budgets are among the first to be cut during tough economic times, this could leave many small business owners with little or no money to promote their products and services. Unfortunately, this reality creates a real catch-22; most experts believe that a good marketing strategy is one key to a small businesses’ success.
The good news is that there are many ways to promote your business on a budget. For example, Peter Kim compiled a list of 22 social media marketing tools for Mashable.com. In addition to online opportunities, there are many old-school ways to promote your business. While they may not be glamorous, they are time-tested and free (or cheap) to try.
1. Know something other’s don’t and be recognized as a resource in your community 2. Be willing to share your knowledge freely 3. Educate others through a public workshop 4. Attend community meetings 5. Take a reporter to lunch 6. Volunteer for a local charity 7. Join a committee 8. Give clients/customers extra business cards 9. Participate in a fair/event 10. Visit your office neighbors 11. Ask clients/customers to tell a friend 12. Wear your company shirt proudly 13. Sponsor a youth sports team 14. Send out a press release 15. Send a thank you card—yes, in the mail 16. Support your clients/customers when they solicit donations for charities they support 17. Join your local Chamber of Commerce 18. Hand deliver a check to a vendor 19. Be a guest speaker at a/your child’s class 20. Write an editorial piece about a current topic and send it to the local paper 21. Call a call-in radio show 22. Call and thank a board member or regular client/customer for their commitment 23. Dress and act professionally 24. Check the signage for your building, is it sufficient? 25. Know our competition and know why you are better 26. Attend professional group meetings & network (Rotary, Toastmasters) 27. Smile, even when you’re on the phone… they’ll be able to tell 28. Always carry brochures with you—you can’t give them out if you don’t have them
Have other "vintage" ideas to share? Please leave them in the comment's section!
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