Two individuals may have identical experiences and when asked to recount them, one gives a positive recollection while the other individual’s recollection is negative. This is an example of mind over matter.
In the former’s experience, the use of willpower overcomes negatives and focuses on the positives.
Marketing, by its very nature, is based on positive focus even in down times. Marketing is all about advancement, progress and the ability to think ahead and think positively.
Take a Page From Marketing Professionals
Marketing professionals may surprise those with less experience in managing down times like a recession. Such is the marketing professional’s level of intense focus on marketing strategies and goals. It may seem to the uninitiated that the pro wears invisible blinders and is totally oblivious to negativity.
Within their intense focus lies the core of marketing creativity. Recession is viewed as an opportunity to review past successes, remodel target markets and generally make good use of time and effort to further embed the business of the business. These professionals know that hitting the brakes when times are tough is the very last thing you should be doing. So, though it may seem unwise, appropriate a budget to stay in front of your clients/customers. The
Staying Ahead in a Recession
There are many options to stay ahead in a recession. A recession can be a unifying effort that can be leveraged for greater business visibility. There are several tips to take to stay ahead in a recession. These include:
. Cohesive marketing team strategies
. Dig into past customer records to review their sales percentages
. Take proactive steps to reactivate business
. Review advertising and promotions and adapt them to meet recession status
Cohesive Marketing Strategies
When marketing teams are able to create new ideas that fit down times, the business benefits through stronger goal setting.
For individual business owners, it may be necessary to think outside-the-box regarding cohesive marketing strategies. For example, reaching out to clients to build relationships if it is appropriate for your business model. This has long term value for business owners who can make best use of stronger B2C relationships and knowledge of buyer’s habits.
Dig into Past Customer Records to Review Sales Percentages
In the archives of old customer records is a wealth of valuable information on buying habits, sales and percentage of sales from each customer. During a recession make time to create a broad picture of past sales that can move business sales ahead through congenial contact.
Business owners should also maintain contact through online blogs, postcards and simple friendly letters that focus on non-business customer needs in a recession.
A recession may make a dent in buying habits, but a recession doesn’t mean customers do not think ahead to better times.
Take Proactive Steps to Reactivate Business
A recession or down time could be a pause that refreshes if it is viewed positively. It is important to understand that even if there was no recession or down time, the business landscape is ever evolving and changes occur often without notice. So too must business owners evolve and change to avoid obsolete business practices.
Take proactive steps to reactive business by offering online videos of the origins of your business. Each video should point out the need for your products or services within a historical nuance. Online users are also customers who make customer referrals when these videos are creative and encourage viewers to visit the website.
Consider other proactive steps such as taking part in a community event. Most towns today have an online municipal government website that includes town activities. This is another proactive step to take. Involvement in events and activities is a way of reaching out to the public and creating word of mouth.
Nothing says more business like an interactive forum that includes customers, suppliers and business staffers. This can be done online or at an offline venue.
Take a cue from TV programs. When scripts and plots go stale, a change of location or addition of a travel site helps curry more customer interest, not to mention add customer referrals. For example, instead of transacting business from the usual business office, choose a particularly attractive offsite venue for a marketing week special event.
For local businesses, visibility is crucial. During a recession, focus on local business sale days or organize and activate a town-wide “Discount Days” event.
Review Advertising and Promotions and Adapt Them to Meet Recession Status
Far too few business owners realize how many different avenues exist for advertising. It may be as simple as being added to a supplier’s ad or mention in a business and industry magazine or news article. Or sending a tasteful postcard that doesn’t ask them for anything but gives them a positive message, which can help keep you top of mind when they are ready to buy.
A recession is the time to review advertising and promotions and adapt them to meet recession status. The keyword in a recession is spending. Depending on the severity of the circumstances, adapt advertising to current customer spending, not those of pre-Recession times.
When business owners know spending by customers is limited, this doesn’t mean customers are not buying. It simply means they are being more cautious of their spending habits until the recession ends. Tap into customers’ deepest needs for your products or services.
Try creating a recession era promotion that captures the imagination of potential buyers. For instance, there may be home buyers who planned a move before a recession. Take the time to remain in contact with these customers by offering online videos.
Offer promotions where applicable. Many in real estate work regularly with other vendors such as moving and relocation companies. A recession is a good time to set up B2B promotions mutually beneficial to both business owners. Don’t forget that a moving company discount offered by a real estate agency keeps both businesses proactive.
Be a Bearer of Good News
While customers may feel the pinch of financial uncertainty during a recession, business owners can be the bearers of good news about their own industries.
Keep the focus of business announcements on what the specific industry as a whole is achieving. This is one way of inspiring hope for better times ahead and will be greatly appreciated by customers and potential customers.
In addition, by providing good news within your particular industry, this inspires deeper trust in the individual business owner and personalizes and strengthens the B2C business relationship.
Clearly, following positive guidelines in down times proves that it isn’t necessary to slash marketing. To the contrary, in a recession it is extremely beneficial to grow marketing, albeit at a slightly slower, more creative pace.
Take marketing to a new level going with the flow of the recession. Offer free promotional gifts to customers and key vendors. This creates good will between the three most important marketing groups: business owners, vendors and suppliers and customers.
Staying ahead in a recession is deeply embedded in the ability to tap into the business owner’s creative juices that may have been dormant during the pre-Recession busier business days.
Know your business potential, your business needs and how to parlay these factors into a slow but sure business recession-proof business.