Defined simply, grassroots marketing delivers your core message to the people where you live, work and play. Grassroots marketing is ideal for small businesses that are on a budget but still need to expand their customer base.

Knowing some highly effective grassroots marketing strategies will help you develop your own grassroots marketing campaigns.

Cold Calls

Nobody likes to do cold calling or get cold calls - but when you are just starting out, you often lack warm call leads. Contrary to popular belief, cold calls don't have to be sales calls.

Cold calls can be just a "for your information" call that lets potential customers know about upcoming sales and promotions. In fact, cold calls don't even have to be actual calls.

You can simply drop in on potential business customers to network and let them know how you can assist them with their needs.

Give your Business a Face

Many large corporations have a mascot, symbol or logo that represents them. They use their mascot or symbol on all their business tools and marketing materials.

That mascot or symbol eventually becomes synonymous with the services or products of that business. Market your small business by handing out toys to kids that have your mascot on it or pens, pencils and other miscellaneous items to adults.

Co-Op your Products

Another grassroots marketing strategy is to find another local business that will allow you to display your products or advertise your services in their store or office.

Many other businesses will allow you to do this for nothing. However, some businesses may require a trade of the same right or a small kickback. Online, this can be done by trading website links and displaying each other links on one another's site.

Offer Samples

Many successful businesses allow potential customers to sample their products prior to using them. When you offer samples, not only does it draw in customers, but it shows your customers that you have confidence in your products.

Depending on what you sell you may have to get creative with your sample offerings, but it will be well worth it. Studies have shown that giving out samples greatly increases the likelihood of a sale.

Plan an Event

Drawing people to your business through an event is another highly effective grassroots marketing technique.

The event can highlight local performers or offer a trial service. Think of something that will attract potential customers to your small business. You can also take part in local events, like craft shows or school and church fundraisers to promote your business.

You don't have to spend a ton of money to effectively implement grassroots marketing strategies, just time. However, your time and energy will be rewarded if you do things right.