Shoestring Marketing – The 7 P’s

Shoestring Marketing is the common name for a style of marketing which could also be described as: “More-Brains-than-Bucks” Marketing; “More-Sweat-than-Silver” Marketing; “More-Chutzpah*-than-Cash” Marketing or “More-Drive-than-Dosh” Marketing. You get the idea.

My form of Shoestring Marketing developed from the pressure point of having no cash for marketing and advertising to grow the business. I knew that unless I made our business very successful, I would never be able to reach my goals.

My goals were and are probably much like your own – to give the children the best education we could afford, live in a nice house in a rural region, eliminate commuting and working long hours for someone else; to pass our working lives doing what we love and our winter years in pleasurable pursuits such as travel & culture, enjoying good food, a few decadences and meeting interesting people. In short – the “good life” or as it’s now called a “treechange lifestyle”

I had big dreams and no way to realise them unless I did something radical. The appeal of Shoestring Marketing for the treechanger is that it is based on smart and low cost marketing so that you can realise your goals and sustain the lifestyle that you crave.

*Chutzpah – Yiddish word meaning “cheeky”, “bold” or “audacious. “Ch” sound pronounced “H” rolling and guttural, deep from the throat.

Prerequisites to being a Great Shoestring Marketer

There are seven prerequisites to being a great shoestring marketer and conveniently, they all start with “P”. The following definitions of the seven ”P’s” relate specifically the characteristics of successful shoestring marketers:

Poverty Mentality – means you proactively avoid spending on the traditional marketing avenues – that is: paid for advertising in the press, radio, TV, magazines, commercial trade shows, lavish printed materials, $50,000 websites etc.



Poise – means self-assurance, self-possession, self-confidence, self-belief, self-reliance, aplomb. Marketing your business is your responsibility. No one else will do it for you. You will need all the “poise” you can muster to move forward and take the inevitable knocks and disappointments – and the aplomb to handle the successes and the self-belief to handle the disappointments appropriately.

Passion – My personal favourite of the seven ‘P’s  means fervor, excitement, enthusiasm and zeal. I can’t teach you this one, you either feel this way about your business and your dreams or you don’t. If you don’t, change your business or find a new dream you can be passionate about.


Professionalism – means to be dedicated, committed, savvy on how to approach customers, suppliers and media in a way they respond to, expert on every aspect of your business, thorough in your approach and follow up and emotionally appropriate when dealing with them all.


Persistence –  means to be determined, dogged, diligent and just a teensy bit pushy but in a nice way..




A Powerful Pitch – This means you’ve done your homework and you know the hot buttons and appeal of your business to your target market  and can put the correct spin on it to interest different media on the different angles.



Persuasiveness – expressive and articulate in getting your ideas across. The natural result of the successful application of the above six “P’s”  is that you will in fact be very persuasive.

Leave a Reply