The Marketing Advantage

Connecting You with Your Customers

7 Secrets to Marketing in an Economic Downturn

Posted by advantagemarketing on August 26, 2010


Powerful ideas for getting more from your marketing

Marketing opportunities

By Loraine Kasprzak, MBA

Change your pitch. Conspicuous consumption is out. Buyers today are looking for more than just brand image, they want to know the value they are getting for their money. Your website, social media pages, marketing literature and sales team should communicate a clear value proposition for your products and services. Demonstrate with examples, testimonials, and case studies how buyers will get more for their money when they buy from you.

Conspicuous consumption is out. Buyers today are looking for more than just brand image, they want to know the value they are getting for their money. Your website, social media pages, marketing literature and sales team should communicate a clear value proposition for your products and services. Demonstrate with examples, testimonials, and case studies how buyers will get more for their money when they buy from you.

Develop lower-cost alternatives to your existing lines. One of the worst things you can do is cut your pricing to boost business. When the economy turns around, you will be stuck with more price-sensitive customers and less profit. Try selling alternatives to your existing lines at lower price points. These “value lines” can offer fewer features and benefits and won’t impact the positioning of your premium products.

Prioritize your spend. This is the year to reevaluate and reallocate funds, making your marketing budget work harder. For example, is all that money spent on event sponsorship or trade shows resulting in more sales? If not, it might be time to invest those dollars in building a compelling company website – or better yet, new-to-you social media tactics – to attract new clients.

Find the opportunities. In a down economy there can still be opportunities to grow your business. One good place to look for the silver lining is in your current customer database. Analyze revenues by customer to uncover who is still buying. Learn more about those companies and their industries to find growing market segments.

Build relationships with current customers. You don’t have to spend big bucks entertaining your customers. Simply ask them what they need from you. Care for them and they will be even more likely to stick with you as a trusted source.

Collaborate and cross-market. Reach out to your network and find another business or two that sells to a similar customer base. By collaborating and combining your marketing efforts with another company, you can both achieve greater impact.

Stretch your budget with social networking. More businesses and consumers are interacting online through blogs, LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook, and other social media. Using these media doesn’t have to be expensive and can be a great way to build visibility for your business. Check out how Internet retailer WebUndies.com uses Twitter to draw more customers.

What are you doing to get more from your marketing budget? Share your ideas in the Comments section below.

Photo attribution: Donna Grayson on Flickr.com

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