How to Use a Business Credit Card for Advertising

A Woman Edits An Advert On A Tablet

Running a small business? Want more people to know about it? That's where advertising comes in - it's how you let people know your business is out there and why they should choose you. Imagine you run an odd jobs or repair service. If you make a video showing how fast you can fix things or put up a shelf and share it on social media, that's advertising - it helps more people learn about what you do.

What is business advertising?

Business advertising spreads the word about your products or services. It's how you let people know your business exists and why they should choose you. Imagine you run a bakery and want everyone to know about your delicious treats. Here are some ways you can spread the word:

  • Social media: Share mouth watering pictures, reels and stories of your bakes on Instagram, as well as other platforms like TikTok and Facebook. Engage with your customers and build a community online.

  • Out-of-home advertising: Put up eye-catching posters in your community. Maybe there's a bulletin board at a local shop or a popular coffee shop. These posters can showcase your specials or personalisation services and encourage people to visit your bakery.

  • Event sponsorship: Your town is hosting a local fair or community event, and by sponsoring it, your bakery's name could be on banners, flyers, and even announced over loudspeakers. It's a way to get your name out there while supporting your community.

  • Online ads: Consider running targeted ads on platforms like Google or Facebook. This ensures that people who are interested in baked goods see your advertisements.

  • Collaborations: Partner with other local businesses. For instance, team up with a coffee shop to cross-promote each other. This way, your bakery gets exposure to a new audience.

Diversity is key in small business advertising. While social media is popular, combining it with local efforts like posters and event sponsorships can create a powerful mix. So, don't limit yourself to just one avenue—explore the various options available to let your business shine.

Why use a business credit card for advertising?

Using a business credit card for advertising can be a smart move. Here's why:

Benefits of using a business credit card for advertising

  • Rewards: As long as you pay off the balance in full each month, a business credit card provides a convenient way to fund marketing campaigns and can earn generous rewards that you’d miss out on if you paid by debit card. For example with a Capital on Tap Business Credit Card you’ll earn 1% cashback on all your marketing spend which you can redeem for cash, statement credit, gift cards, or airmiles. You can reinvest the rewards in your business’ marketing budget or other areas of the business. 

  • Manage your expenses: Business credit cards provide detailed statements and integrations with accounting software, allowing you to track spending patterns. This data can inform future advertising strategies, helping you allocate resources more effectively.

  • Virtual cards for advertising spend: Many business credit cards also provide free virtual cards. You can create virtual cards for different vendors to effortlessly track your marketing expenses.

  • Employee spending: If you have employees managing advertising expenses, business credit cards often come with employee cards. You can issue these to your employees and set limits on individual cards to prevent overspending while ensuring they can get their job done.

Drawbacks of using a business credit card for advertising

  • Repayments: If you can't pay off your business credit card balance in full, interest accrues. This can eat into your advertising budget.

How to use a business credit card for advertising?

Here's a step-by-step guide to making the most of your business credit card when it comes to advertising:

Use your business credit card for all marketing spending

Whether you’re investing in printed flyers or boosting a Facebook post, using your business credit card to cover the printing costs or the paid ad fee, centralising your advertising expenses in one place simplifies your financial management, effortlessly earns you rewards and allows you to track your expenditure.

Choose the right business credit card for your needs

Look into the different options available. Check out what each card offers, like rewards, and credit limits. Make sure you also check the annual fees, foreign transaction fees, and interest rates associated with the card. Factor these costs into your business's financial plan so they don’t reduce your advertising spend.

Do this research before applying for a business credit card. Applying for many cards at once can hurt your credit score if they do a hard credit check. If you’d like to know more about choosing the right business credit card for your business, head to our blog, How to Choose a Business Credit Card. 

Set an advertising budget

Establishing a clear advertising budget ensures you allocate resources effectively without the risk of overspending. A common rule of thumb suggests that small businesses should dedicate between 2-5% of their revenue to marketing. For example, if your business generates £100,000 in revenue, allocate between £2,000 and £5,000 for advertising to ensure a balanced budget that aligns with industry standards.

Track your spending and results

Using a business credit card with expense management features like spend categories and accounting integrations can help you keep track of your marketing spend. These insights help inform decision-making and refine your marketing strategy for optimal results.

Tips for using a business credit card to market your business effectively

Integrating your business credit card into your marketing strategy can clearly be a game-changer. Here are some essential tips to make the most out of it:

Focus on your target audience

Understanding your customers is the compass guiding your advertising journey. Tailor your marketing efforts to reach them specifically. For example, if you run a clothing boutique, your advertising content and channels should reflect the interests and preferences of your target demographic.

Invest in a variety of marketing channels

Diversification is key to reaching a broader audience. While focusing on your primary audience is crucial, explore various marketing channels to tap into different segments. For instance, alongside social media, consider traditional methods like local sponsorships or collaborations. This multi-channel approach maximises your business's visibility.

Track your results and make adjustments as needed

Your business advertising efforts shouldn’t end with launching your campaigns; it's essential to monitor their success continually. Leverage the tracking features of your business credit card to assess spending patterns and correlate them with campaign performance. If a particular channel is delivering exceptional results, allocate more resources there. Conversely, if something isn't working as expected, be prepared to adjust your approach. This flexibility ensures your marketing strategy evolves with the dynamic needs of your business and the preferences of your audience.

The bottom line 

In conclusion, using a business credit card for advertising can be a powerful tool for small businesses. Just remember to choose the right card, set a budget, and track your spending and results. By doing so, you'll not only promote your business effectively but also earn rewards to fuel future growth.


This does not constitute financial advice. If you wish to understand the suitability of a credit or debit card for your business, contact your financial advisor or accountant. 

Looking for a financial tool to help improve your business’ cash flow? Apply in minutes for the Capital on Tap Business Credit Card with limits up to £250,000. 

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