Every business owner can't afford to hire an expert marketing consultant team. For those of you who are simply too cash-strapped but need to get the word out about your business, you've come to the right place.

Read on to discover 9 ways you can promote your brand online for free.

1. Create a Google My Business Page

This is a great way to boost your online visibility. This listing will make your business easy to find on Google Search and Google Maps. It will also allow Google+ users to easily review your business. As local business reviews increase, your search engine rankings will also improve. It would also be a good idea to add your business to the Yahoo Local listing.

2. Sign up for Online Reviews

Create a Yelp listing, it's free and gives you access to their impressive 140 million monthly visitors. Another great review sites is Angie's List, they charge users a small fee but listing your business is free.

3. Fire Up Social Media Networking

Find relevant LinkedIn and Facebook groups which have active users. Posting on such pages will give you access to all these users. You don't need to join a ton of these, remain focused on three or four at the most. Offer solid advice and feedback. You will build a reputation of trust and boost brand visibility among like-minded people.

4. Turn Social Media into a Promotion Machine

Yes this is possible; all you have to do is put in a little effort into it. Here are some basics you need to implement:

5. Create Interesting and Informative Content

The right content requires creativity and thoughtful consideration. Learn the needs of your potential customers and focus on informing rather than promoting. Content marketing is not a direct sales pitch and involves planning and time. Here are some basics tips you can follow:

6. Reach Out to Industry Influencers

Email a few influencers in your product niche and ask them for advice. An easy way to initiate communication is to send them a detailed testimonial about their products or services. People love reading thoughtful feedback and might even post your comments on their website.

Additionally you can also leave your comments on relevant blog posts, you can include your URL in the proper field. Try to use the name of your business or your real name when commenting. Avoid using keywords as anchor text.

7. Co-Sponsor Contests and Giveaways

Partner with a complementary business and co-sponsor a giveaway or contest. It is a win-win situation for all participating businesses. You will get access to each other's audience base with minimum effort. You can kick it up a notch and list the contest to other sweepstakes sites.

8. Generate Free PR

Sign up with Help A Reporter Out (HARO) and generate free PR. You can respond to any relevant media queries and get mentions in major publications.

Look up the most active forums with members who are connected to your industry. Join these and respond to any open questions; be polite, kind and helpful to build up a great reputation. Do not spam these forums with links to your website. Any contribution should be meaningful and interesting. If you're in a service industry (freelancer, programmer, doctor, lawyer, investment banker etc.) you can become an expert in no time.

The days of massive marketing budgets are gone; the Internet seems to have leveled the playing field. Take advantage of this and start planning your online marketing campaign now!