As we hit the worst recession in generations, with continued uncertainty due to covid-19 and Brexit, the instinct is to manage your business costs and one of the first victims will naturally be your marketing budget. However it could be argued that now is the time to fight against that instinct and, instead of cutting your marketing budget, it’s time to get wise to what works and throw your weight behind it more than before, and more wisely. Enquiries and leads will be rarer but that’s not to say the money isn’t there. Here is our quick take-outs on how to do this, and fine tune your recession marketing plan:
- Other companies will be reducing their spend. This means an opportunity for you to get a strong share of voice and representation amongst your likely buyers. Just make sure it is in the right places that deliver the outcomes that you need. Also be mindful that bigger businesses with bigger budgets might take this opportunity to swamp the market – so focus locally, and in the areas that will produce the most loyalty, repeat business and will generate word of mouth.
- Consider evidenced based results more than ever. This may mean challenging loyalty to, and relationships with, traditional brand led channels such as radio, newspapers or magazines but your business survival is key. Mass media generates awareness but targeted media across a variety of the best channels can give you much more bang for your buck as long as your marketing is in the right hands, and your message engages appropriately.
- Further to the above consider your likely outcomes of your marketing efforts. Likes and shares on social media may be nice buy are they driving enquiries? Do you want likes, shares, website visits, or leads? Using analytics you can question whether your efforts are driving business. Further analysis can show you whether this activity actually matches up with your real life customers.
- Be aware of your customers decision making timeframes. If it takes a year or more for people to move from initial research stages to purchasing then todays website or store visitors will be next years customers. Understand, plan and budget for this. Make sure that they also have a great experience and that you capture their data for follow up conversations or offers.
- Don’t waste the hard work. Generally speaking if 100 people visit your website then between two and five will make an enquiry. This means that your previous marketing activity is generating at least 95% of waste when it comes to your website visitors. A solid remarketing plan, with multiple messages that tell your story, build your brand, showcase your product range and offers, telling people why they should buy from you is the tightest opportunity you may have. Moreover, a remarketing strategy that is correctly managed will ensure that potential customers don’t get ad exhaustion, and it will deliver the correct messages depending on their behaviour from when they visit your website.
- In our collective careers in marketing one thing has always held true: Top of the mind awareness delivers bottom line results. So, now is the time that you need to focus on being the top of the mind of those who are most likely to buy. That means data driven and evidenced decisions with evidenced outcomes according to your customer buying timeframes, and your business expectations.
We at ARC wish everyone the best of luck on this journey, and hope that you find this and future blog posts of use as we sail into further unknown choppy waters. The one thing we can assure ourselves of though is that we are stronger against the current when we hold hands. So if you want any independent reviews, advice, or analysis the please feel free to reach out.