Should you Cut Back or Push Marketing In A Recession?

During the current economic downturn, the question is often debated around whether to continue advertising particularly with companies watching every cent they spend in order to survive. Advertising is a way to help customers visualise your service benefits. It increases visibility of the company and its products, and strengthens brand awareness. Advertising coins the phrase “in the face of the customer”; it’s all about being seen.

You will find that consistently communicating your message through advertising and editorial will help brand your product and, if your product delivers its promised benefits, sales will increase over time.

Your FD (Financial Director) no doubt has insisted that you cut back on advertising spend, while the marketing department is pushing to continue with advertising.  So how do we adjust?

The benefits of advertising are numerous. Brand awareness develops your corporate identity to deliver a constant message to your customer. To offer a special, or communicate a message about a certain event that you may be participating in, advertising draws the reader’s attention to linked editorial.

You should not consider drastic advertising cutbacks, but rather consider reducing covers to full pages, or full pages to half.  Reducing advertisement size, frequency or ensuring editorial accompanies an advert will maintain awareness within reduced expenses.  Advertising executives of the various publications can be approached to suggest cost effective alternatives to reducing spend without reducing impact.

If you build strong relations with both the advertising executive and the editor of the publication that you are focusing on, you have a better opportunity to negotiate rates and editorial contribution.


Tools to Measure Advertising
In order to measure the effectiveness of your advertising, apply the following tips:

Advertise one dedicated phone line or email address for enquiries, in this way you can measure your success rate against calls coming in.

Include a “call to action” in either your advert or editorial which encourages the reader to want to make contact with you whether it is a special offer, a piece of information with respect to new technology which they will want to know more about that raises the question in their mind to encourage them to want to contact you to satisfy their curiosity and give them the answer they are looking for.

Look at options to find something new to communicate about.  If you have advertised and published press releases on the same product range and same features and benefits, look at other angles, find a solution to a clients needs, identify clients that may offer testimonials with respect to solutions that have saved their company costs, improved efficiencies and heightened their production.  Testimonials are a great way of building your credibility.

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About Marketing consults on design and implementation of a company’s marketing strategy incorporating various marketing strategies such as company branding and corporate identity, events management, website development and much more.

For more information contact:

Sandy van Zyl
Chartered Marketer (CMSA)
Tel: 011 452 9064
Fax: 086 681 6688
www.aboutmarketing.co.za
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