Should I Cut My Marketing Expense when Business is Sluggish?
Marketing expense is a fanatical thought that most small business owners are considering in their minds across the globe. There is a global sluggishness which will affect every sector, industry and continents differently.
As I am writing this article, my Africa connections inform me that the economies across Africa are still booming and this is confirmed in the different financial papers in the United Kingdom. The financial papers are pointing to Africa as an emerging market in terms of trade and commence. I am aware that this is not the case for the whole of Africa, after all there is still the after mark of the drought in Ethiopia. Let’s get back to the question at hand though.
As a marketing professional, I would recommend to my clients that in this challenging economic climate, they should consider increasing their marketing budgets as this has a remarkable effect on the company or organisation in the long term. Depending on the industry you are in, the notion of market share is very important and in challenging economic climates the companies that could increase their market budgets will gain a bigger market share from their competitors who chose to decrease their marketing budget.
The reason for this is extremely simple when the economy rotates back consumers are most likely to buy from companies or organisations that have been constant with their marketing message and consumers can remember them instead of their competitors. Some consumers may even presume that a company or organisation has ceased trading due to lack of awareness and visibility during down times. Another advantage of a sluggish economy is that you get better value for your marketing budget for the reason that you can negotiate better rates with media owners who are keen to get your business.
The best industry that delivers highly on this notion is the retail sector in the UK. Let’s examine the supermarket chains in the UK, can you honestly say that Tesco, Sainsbury, Asda or Waitrose have cut their marketing budgets? No. If you are following the news or the stock market, you will notice that the retail sector is experiencing difficult a trading period as some consumers are shopping at cheaper supermarkets. This sector clearly understands that in order to maintain their market share, they need to increase their marketing budget because when the economy turns, they want their customers to come back to them.
I here you saying but these are big companies and they can afford it. If you are a small business, you need to increase your marketing. If not, you will lose your clients to your competitors. Secondly, you need to increase your marketing to ensure that potential customers are totally aware of your brand and when they need your service they will remember you first. Once you become first choice for potential customers you are on your way to becoming a market leader in that sector and you will experience a phenomenal growth as the economy turns around, which will happen soon. A market leader in your sector you may even consider growing your business through mergers or acquisition of some of your competitors. The bottom line is that you don’t cut your marketing spend in any economy, instead you ensure that every marketing pounds spent is properly implemented and measured in order to evaluate the outcome. Even if you are using fliers or leaflets you should monitor and measure the results of your effort and investment. Remember to set some clear objectives for your marketing campaign and have an idea of what a successful campaign will mean for your business.