During these challenging times it’s important to consider marketing strategies, which can keep your business growing through an economic downturn. When small businesses are doing it tough, often the first thing to get axed is the marketing budget. But this is a mistake. It’s proven that businesses can prosper during a recession, growing their companies and seizing new market share from self-defeating competitors.
1. Don’t Slam on the Marketing Brakes
When a downturn hits, marketing is often one of the first expenses business owners are tempted to cut. It’s a knee-jerk reaction, which keeps money in the coffers in the short-term, but leaves your brand weakened and much less profitable post-recession. It might seem counterintuitive to not only maintain, but to execute, a robust marketing plan during a recession. But it will enable you to increase your market share, especially when your competitors have put a freeze on their marketing spend.
Here’s how it works.
There is truth in the popular saying: “When times are good you should advertise. When times are bad you must advertise”.
In fact, “Studies going back nearly one century point out the advantages of maintaining or even increasing ad budgets during a weaker economy. Those advertisers that maintained or grew their ad spending increased sales and market share during the recession and afterwards”. – Forbes
2. Adjust your Marketing to Meet New Consumer Needs and Wants
Consumers are redefining value and taking more time and care searching for goods. People change as the world changes around them. It’s important to take a close look at your customers’ changing needs and how you can position yourself to respond. Take advantage of technology and social media, they’re going to play a vital role in the growth of businesses during uncertain times.
For example, if a gym usually advertises for customers to join their club, attend group fitness classes and personal training, their new marketing could include streaming live workout sessions online and tips on how to set up a home gym using common household items.
It’s so important to continue communicating with your customers, help them, educate them, support them in any way you can. When the pandemic is over and they need your goods or service, you will be front of mind.
With digital marketing you’re constantly collecting data so it’s easy to split-test different messages to see what works for your target audience. Now is a great time to examine and increase your optimisation.
3. Love your Existing Customers
Your brand’s biggest asset during a recession is your existing customers. They already know you and love you! It’s cheaper and more profitable to retain your existing customers than to acquire new ones. Bend over backwards to keep them happy and reward their loyalty, they will repay you with recommendations and reviews.
Be pro-active, act now, and think about the long-term result that today’s decision will have on your business once the economy bounces back after COVID-19.
If you need a professional creative to help grow your business during this time and beyond, we’re here to support you in any way we can.
Together we’ll make it through this and emerge stronger and more prosperous on the other side.
Keep an eye out for my next blog later this week where I'll be sharing ways that you can market your business for free.