No budgets for branding? Here’s what you can do…

Adithya Venkatesan
3 min readApr 19, 2022

A quick primer on different things you can do when you don’t have huge budgets for brand marketing ☺️

I get a lot of queries around how one can do brand marketing when budgets are scarce. In most cases, you will be able to do a fantastic job at branding if the focus is on quality content. No compromises here 😏. This alone will be a huge competitive advantage against orgs with budgets.

Considering this is a repetitive question, this post should help. This entire post was originally published as a tweetstorm —

In no particular:

  1. Get your leadership to be vocal on social — this is non-negotiable. People want to work with smart people. 🙏🏻
    (Add a performance marketing layer to increase reach.) This is to increase reach of each piece of content posted on social so it reaches your TA.
  2. Showcase interesting features, initiatives you’re undertaking — underscore challenges in what you’re building. Have a blog that becomes the bedrock of your proposition. (Quality content is hard, and investing in the right person here can help grow your brand manifold)
  3. Highlight employee-friendly policies. When you’re small, you have the liberty to do a lot more — this is a major competitive advantage against the biggies. Flex. (Large orgs are driven by chaotic processes, and rigid policies to focus on the collective. This is a strong lever to market when you’re a small org)
  4. Have one session for all new joinees to help pitch your org:
    - What is the vision/mission?
    - What are the differentiators from competition?
    - What’s the industry landscape?
    - Key milestones worthy of mention
    The more folks bat for you, the larger visibility you get.
  5. Nurture ambassadors within the team — get more folks to help you brand, pitch. Activate PR for product announcements — get wide reach from digital publications. (start here)
  6. Speak to micro-influencers (5k+ followers) to get the word out for your brand. Do this earnestly with full disclosures. Else, a slippery-slope. (This is super easy to do when you’re a small org. Also helps you get the word out and win some early allies)
  7. If you’re in dire need for visibility, crunch your budgets, follow blitzkrieg marketing. Detailed understanding of ‘why’, & ‘how’ to go about this is in this tweetstorm —
  8. Memes are not branding. 😔
    This is being done to death now. 😖
    At best, this an attention grab. Your core base has to be long-form, deeply researched, well edited/reported posts on how a Founder/leader thinks about challenges, problems your org is trying to solve.
  9. Closely monitor every Job Description (easier to do when you’re small) — it’s an advertisement for your org. Avoid copy+paste sentences like, ‘looking for strong communication skills’. Instead, talk about the fun things the team is doing, throw in colour about people.
  10. All work, no play is bloody dull. People want to see personalities. What’s your Founder like outside of work? What’s your CTOs favourite book/whisky/movie? Showcasing this on social helps build individual brand personalities that help you hire senior talent. 😍
  11. Add some flavour to your leadership on social channels. Pick a theme. Hunker down. For example: If you’re a fintech player, then your leadership should be talking about UPI, infrastructure, the growth of credit in India, et al. There’s so much to educate your audience and own a particular theme. This is highly contextual for your org — but owning a niche makes you the go-to person in a particular field.


Any other thoughts? Please do leave a comment :)



Adithya Venkatesan

Brand Marketer. Twitter: @adadithya. Travel fanatic. Wildlife lover. Voracious reader. Cenosillicaphobic. Logophile. Past: @gojektech @reuters @ACJIndia