When times are tough! 2. Is it time to stop advertising?
Whenever the state of the economy comes into question, the tightening of the purse strings could be seen as an entirely natural business reaction.
Unfortunately, often, it is the marketing budget that’s first to fall victim to such a reaction.
Business Intelligence from McKinsey & Co and the Financial Times advocates the importance of marketing through challenging times.
Something I’ve proven first-hand – successfully guiding a number of brands – large and small, through not one, but two recessions – in 1994 and 2008 respectively.
So, here are some of the lesson’s I learnt, to help you navigate through these tough times…
With talks of one crisis or another all over the media, it’s easy to get dragged into discussions about the state of the economy, and the likelihood of a recession.
However, the economy is made up of many markets, all performing at different rates.
And remember, news outlets and business journalists are harbingers of doom – it makes interesting copy.
So don’t think too hard about the economy.
Always pay attention to THE market but be totally focused on YOUR market.
And, when I say YOUR market, I’m talking about those customers that generate YOUR sales and YOUR revenue.
And to put a positive spin on the situation…
Downturns present an opportunity to deepen relationships with loyal customers.
Many businesses obey the 80/20 rule. If this is roughly you, make sure you know which 20% of your customers are delivering 80% of your sales, and keep them sweet!
Keep existing customers SOLD, and prospective customers INTERESTED.
Customer behaviour changes when times are tough, therefore, make sure you know what’s important to them now!
REMEMBER: ‘Customers don’t stop spending
when the market goes through down cycles.
They just look harder for value’*
Can you add customer value without dropping prices?
Can you add customer value without increasing costs?
Take, for instance, markets suffering from supply chain issues due to COVID, Brexit and the war in Ukraine.
Product ‘AVAILABILITY’ now trumps ‘AFFORDABILITY’ as a powerful customer promise – especially in sectors where projects are working to a deadline.
Do your research! What works for you may also work for your competitors, so make sure you’re aware of what they are offering.
Be ruthless in your evaluation – take off those rose-tinted glasses.
Need some thoughts and ideas on how to stay focused and keep your most valuable customers sweet?
Why not drop me a line at email@example.com
Click here to read part two: ‘When times are tough, is it time to stop advertising?’
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