Marketing Budget for Small Business: How much should you spend?


Setting up a successful business is never easy. There’s a ton of hard work, sacrifice and decision-making the list goes on. However, setting a marketing budget is one of the most crucial decisions you’ll make. But that leads us to the question ‘How much should you spend on marketing for your small business?’ We’ll try to give you a clear and concise guidance around budgeting and answer that ‘million dollar’ question…

What Exactly Is A Marketing Budget?  

Well in simple terms, it’s a fixed pre-prepared form of finances that is aimed at maintaining your business’s  marketing. However, regarding the main question: How much should you spend in your marketing budget? Well, it all depends. Several factors play into the decision of making a marketing budget for your small business. lists the size of your business for instance as a key factor, although the size, even among small businesses, may vary. Next, the country you’re living in. Furthermore, the type of industry in which your business is involved, your growth potential, and of course your growth stage.   

However, the general rule of thumb for small businesses is spending from 5 to 8 percent of your annual revenue on digital marketing.

That is if you’re going for the basics in your digital marketing strategy. However, you’re looking to start your business mainly by building brand awareness, then that percentage is likely going to go up. Way up to 20%. Of course, not small businesses can afford to spend 20% of their revenue on their marketing budget.

But those who can afford it, should. This applies to the advertising methods and the marketing channels you use in your digital marketing campaign. Some channels are more affordable, while others are a bit pricier.   

marketing budget

Research, research and more research  

Indeed. Before embarking on a digital marketing journey for your business, and therefore spending your revenue mindlessly, we recommend doing extensive research. Not just on the digital marketing strategies that are more suited for your small business. But for your business in general. And the key advice here is to prioritize your needs and focus on your wants. Which means, it’s best to come up with a list of priorities, pros and cons, Of course, it helps to know your business, inside and out, and to focus on your future.

What it is that you want your business to convey? What is your target audience? What is that you’re trying to sell to your customers? And how are you going to do that? Find out your strengths and weaknesses. And focus on maximizing the former, while minimizing the latter. But if you have a chance, do a little research on your competitors as well. Find out how and where your biggest rivals are spending their marketing budget. It’s a good start for your strategy, according to BDC.  

Have A Clear Picture Of Your Finances!  

Set a clear plan of actions and objectives when it comes to your finances. It’s very easy to get lost in the shuffle when you don’t have a clear vision of what you want to achieve. So, it’s best to have a clear picture of your marketing objective and try not to get seduced. We all can get easily distracted by the latest social media platform. Set up a nice and clear plan when it comes to spending your budget and stick to it.  

Don’t Forget To Track Your Progress  

You’ve set up your marketing budget. You’ve done the research, and you’ve started your campaign. Now what? Well, now it’s time to track your progress. What’s the outcome of your campaign? What’s the positive feedback from your marketing campaign? How about the faults, the setbacks and the mishaps? Something that you need to repeat in the next steps of your campaign? Or something to avoid entirely.

Tracking your progress, and your KPI’s will keep you on the right path to success. In every aspect of your digital marketing campaign. It will also indicate if you need to take further steps into the campaign. For instance, if you need to outsource your digital marketing team. Or if you need to bring additional members to your company in order to meet your needs. And by outsourcing, we mean hiring a graphic designer for your digital marketing campaign. Or a good web developer. Or perhaps a video editor. But keeping track of your progress will help you find out what you need next, according to Medium.  

And Don’t Ignore The SEO!  

How many times have you heard these three simple yet very confusing letters? Well, they are there for a reason and every digital marketing campaign should include them. Regardless if you’re promoting sales or content writing services. It doesn’t really matter. A good SEO strategy will get you far and the tracking of the keywords will potentially boost your Google rankings.  Spending some extra time and money on a good SEO specialist will go a long way. Every small business likes to get noticed, and SEO will get you noticed well.   

Steady Growth Or Lightning Fast?   

What are your expectations for your small business? With the marketing budget that you have in mind? Is it a slow and steady growth of your customer base?  Or are you looking for lightning-fast growth? Well, if you are, prepare to spend a lot more money on your budget. Fast growth means spending a lot more money. But hey, it’s up to you and your business needs.   

Bottom line: Setting up your marketing budget should be a priority for your small business strategy.

However, a good piece of advice is to always do a lot of research before you do your budget strategy. Analyse, consult and research everything. And of course, prioritise. What is your goal? What is your business plan and what’s your endgame? What do you want to achieve with your marketing budget and how are you planning to achieve that? There are plenty of tools to help, but don’t get overwhelmed.

Luckily for you, there are very cool digital marketing companies, such as My Digital Ego, who know what to do in that department. We have a fantastic team of specialists that can meet your every need, leave your details on for a free consultation and chat through your marketing ambitions and goals and let us help you drive more leads and sales.

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