Double Down or Pull Back?
Turn on the news, and you’ll immediately be overwhelmed with the noise… the topics of inflation, interest rates, and instability are blowing up right now. Everyone is trying to figure out if we’re in a recession or not. Negativity sells, and right now, there’s plenty of pessimism and fear to go around. Just get in line.
As an agency, we can’t tell you if this is a recession or how interest rates will impact borrowing… However, we have been in the game long enough to know that from a marketing perspective, two camps are forming.
First, there’s the camp that will dial back its marketing spend. They’re afraid that things are softening, so the safe bet is to cut expenses. Businesses have marketing budgets in their sights right now, and those budgets are one of the first areas where this camp makes its cuts.
The second camp is leveraging a different strategy. As competitors are pulling back on their marketing investments, this camp is doubling down and marketing harder. They see the potential in speaking up while everyone else is getting quiet and understand the opportunity to increase their market share.
Read that last sentence again. This is an opportunity to increase market share. We saw companies do this back in 2008, and most recently, some organizations did the same during the pandemic. When things got challenging, they doubled down… and they won.
When there’s potentially less of the pie to go around, you can either settle in for your smaller slice or try to increase what lands on your plate. You get to choose.
We want to be careful with this message…
As an agency, it may be easy to think we’re sharing this message from a place “spend more with us on your marketing right now.” That’s not the case. Our customers are all moving forward, focusing on the opportunity in front of us today. That looks different for everyone, but across the board, our clients are taking advantage of this chance to increase their market share, and we’re busy helping them do just that.
We’re also not saying to be reckless with your marketing budgets right now. We should all be evaluating the performance of our marketing all of the time – both when things are hot and when they’re cold. ROI and KPIs always need to be at the forefront of the investments we’re making to market our businesses.
Forrester released an article about this a few weeks back. Their advice was spot on. First, realign your marketing goals to your growth opportunities. Update your marketing plan to the new realities we’re all seeing. Reallocate your marketing budgets to reduce waste. Do all of these things… but keep marketing.
Now is not the time to let off the gas. Every time the economic landscape shifts like this, there are companies who take advantage of the quieter marketplace to gain more of a competitive edge.
Again, this is an opportunity. The question is, will you take advantage of it?
Go back to that advice from Forrester. Revisit your marketing plan and make some adjustments. Reallocate funds where you need to… but keep on marketing. You’ll be glad you did on the other side.
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