It might not seem like much, but if you use it creatively, $100 can give your business a small (or not so small) boost. Here are 5 suggestions to get you inspired.
I’ve said it many times before, but I believe that people are the most important part of a business. If you run a small business, $100 is a sensible budget for giving every person in your team a treat, just because you appreciate them. While a $10 gift card is nice, a gift that relates to their interests outside of work – maybe a personalized notebook for the stationery fanatic in your team - is so much nicer as it shows you really thought about what to get them (and that you bothered to take the time to get to know them in the first place!).
In my experience, doing things for your people spontaneously has a much bigger proportionate impact on morale and team spirit. Your team might know they’re going to get a pay review or be treated to a team meal during the holiday season, but thoughtful gifts at random are a nice surprise, and they stick in the memory for much longer.
Speaking of notebooks, corporate gifts such as branded stationery, USB sticks or keyrings are a low-cost investment that can keep you front-of-mind with your clients and prospects. They’re not just for trade shows or events, either. You can offer someone a pen with your name on it at a meeting, enclose a notepad with a routine mailing or leave some free gifts out at reception for people to pick up when they visit you.
As well as getting your name out there and giving your customers a helping hand, branded gifts can make your business look bigger and more professional, which can sometimes work in your favor.
Putting a small amount of money into Facebook ads and other social media advertising can pay big dividends, especially if you use the specificity and power of these platforms to your advantage. If you combine your spend with some smart copywriting, astute audience selection and eye-catching image choices, you could find yourself benefiting from people sharing your ads and clicking your call to action to buy your goods, or sign up for an event you’re running. Here’s a great article that lists 7 ways Facebook ads can help your sales growth.
A business associate of mine loves to spend an afternoon every month crafting Facebook ads. Coming up with ideas and angles for different audiences is an opportunity to air creative writing skills she hasn’t used since high school. If there’s someone in your team who has a way with words, this is a perfect task for them.
Sprucing up the premises
Leaky faucet, sticking window closure or temperamental door handle? Using $100 on minor repairs to your office or store is a great idea. Small faults have an impact that can really add up when you have to deal with them day in, day out.
Spend $100 down at the DIY store or on hiring a handyperson and your staff will thank you for it. What’s more, your customers will notice the difference when they visit. Who wants to have a meeting in a stuffy room with a window that won’t open?!
There’s a whole world of online courses out there these days, covering everything from foreign languages to web design. The MOOC (massive open online course) phenomenon makes training available to just about anyone with an internet connection, and courses are often low-cost or even free. As an example, Open2Study offers many free courses – from web writing to project management.
A $100 budget can get multiple members of your team enrolled on a course that supports your business, and since many of them are self-paced, study can fit conveniently around quieter periods in the workplace.