Stuart Gentle Publisher at Onrec

How to Market Through Recession

We all know the world is facing economic crisis. In times of recession and economic downturn everybody looks to cut costs and tighten their belts. One of the first so-called luxuries to go is often marketing but this can be a major mistake.

Take Advantage of Others Cutting Back on Marketing

Whilst we are all looking to cut costs and save where we can far too often this ends in companies cutting their marketing, advertising and sales budgets. But if we stopped to think about it for a minute we might consider this an opportunity to gain a bigger share of the market.

If your company is considering cutting back on its advertising and marketing then so will your competition and if you are not the market leader or a serious player in the market this might be the opportune time to get a better market share.

Whilst the competition cuts back its marketing if you increase or at the very least keep doing what you have been doing then you could well become the new market leader. By increasing your brand awareness you will soon be seen as a serious market player and when the economic downturn shifts, and it will, you will be well placed to take advantage. You will also be seen as a company that stayed strong in times of economic downturn and are therefore more reliable and stable.

Obviously all marketing needs to be measured and within a workable budget, and it certainly is not suggested that you bankrupt your company just for the sake of marketing. But a considered marketing approach controlled by budget is better than cutting all marketing in the vain hope of decreasing costs.

Use Accountable Marketing

The best kind of marketing is that which is either free or is fully accountable, that is you can really see where the return on investment is coming in. For this you will need to use analytical software, promotion IDs and tracking codes so that you can really see what is and what is not working.

Here are some marketing activities that give great return on investment:

  • Pay per click online advertising. Free online advertising and links to your website.
  • Search Engine Optimization for natural search rank placement (if not already ranked this can take 6-12 months but is well worth the investment for business 24/7).
  • Direct marketing – direct email marketing is generally free but get permission before you send the emails for the recipient.
  • Free PR – online and off freely placed press release can increase business.
  • Telemarketing / telesales – especially in B2B markets compare knocking on 20 doors in a day or calling 200 companies, with telemarketing you can cover more ground quicker.
  • Traceable advertising – if you can afford to keep advertising try and use promotional codes for customers to quote so you can quickly track which adverts are working.
  • Promotional offers – advert space can sometimes be secured by offering the magazine, newspaper or website a unique reader’s promotional offer in return for the advert.
  • Networking – get out there and talk to all you can about your business help spread the word of mouth.
  • Word of mouth – focus on giving a great customer experience and your customers will promote your business for you.

In short, cutting back on marketing is not the answer to beating the recession as this may decrease your income. Cut back on cost in other more practical ways.

Small Business Owners Feel Pain, but Optimistic

While Wall Street becomes one of the biggest headlines amid the dismal economy, Main Street, which ended last year with a lengthy list of troubles, is snubbed in the media nationwide, writes a Poker Guide website.

Yet it is small businesses on "Main Street" that really drive the U.S. economy. As the recession deepens, it is those businesses — which traditionally have led the country out of recessions — that are feeling the pain and getting hit hard as big companies.

While large corporations have laid off mass numbers of employees over the past decade, small businesses — which politicians tout as the engine of U.S. economic growth — have generated 60% to 80% of the total new jobs annually.

Defined by the government as with 500 employees or fewer, small businesses represent 99% of all employer firms, according to the Small Business Administration. Compared with just under 19 million who work at large companies, they employ 50 million people and are the biggest source of non-government employment.

Small Business Revenues Drops

According to the Wells Fargo/Gallup Small Business Index, nearly half of the small business owners say their revenues decreased throughout 2020.

Elpida Kosmidis, owner of Super One Hour Cleaners said in an interview at her store that her revenue was down 50% by the end of 2020 compared to one year ago.

“All slow,” Kosmidis, who has operated the store for 26 years in Brighton, Mass. “It’s very tough... People don’t have money. Customers that used to come every week now come every month.”

According to a study by the National Association for the Self-Employed, 43% of self-employed individuals and micro-business owners said this is the worst economic downturn they have experienced.

The National Federation of Independent Business said the number of businesses reporting declining earnings trends outnumbered those with profits by 42 percentage points, the worst reading in its 35-year history of the survey. More than 25% of small business owners said they fear the recession threatens their survival. And one-third of the business owners said the recession has significantly affected their businesses.

Small Business Owners are Cautiously Optimistic

A survey found that 37% of small business owners worry, but that 60% said they believe it will be better now. But despite the undercurrent of tenacious optimism, small-business owners remain cautious about the amount of time it will take for the country to recover from the tumultuous economy.

According to the Discover Small Business Watch, a monthly index of the nation's 22 million businesses with five or fewer employees, only 23% anticipate that the recovery will take less than a year. Forty-two percent of owners think that economic recovery will take between 12 and 24 months, while 27% believe that it will take longer than two years.