Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Bear Marketing: Smarter Marketing Strategies in a Tough Economy

Yes, yes, we know: "Times are tough." The U.S. has entered a bear market which may or may not drag on, the world continues to cope with pandemic-related issues, and global conflict has made its own mark on an already ugly picture. But if you've been in business for decades, you've seen several pretty grim patches come and go. So how do you keep your head above water, or even thrive, during a tough economy? How do you market your brand to consumers and businesses reluctant to open their wallets? Let's look at some smart ways to make your marketing dollar work harder for you.

Maintain (or Boost) Your Marketing Investment

It may sound counterintuitive, but sometimes you need to increase your marketing investment to get more bang for your marketing buck. Sure, you can cobble together something resembling a DIY marketing campaign, but if that bailing-wire-and-string approach doesn't bring in more business, how have you helped your financial picture? (In reality, you've probably damaged your business further by taking yourself away from other vital tasks to focus on those unsuccessful tactics.) Now's the time to bite the bullet, consult a marketing strategist, and take whatever steps that marketing strategist advises to turn your marketing budget into an income generator instead of a boondoggle.

Resist the urge to cut back on your marketing -- unless you want to see your customer base shrink to microscopic levels. During the big economic crunch of 2008, the businesses that curtailed their marketing saw some short-term benefits. But once the recession ended, those businesses found themselves way behind their competitors who had continued to market themselves consistently and aggressively.

Emphasize Digital Marketing

Traditional marketing methods haven't gone the way of the dodo by any means. Print marketing still matters for reaching certain chunks of your target market that digital marketing might not impact. However, those chunks are getting smaller and smaller as more and more shoppers rely on their computers and mobile phones to find the products and services they need. It only makes sense, then, to shift your marketing focus toward the digital world if you want to grab new buyers' attention and maintain current buyers' loyalty.

Digital marketing holds another money-saving advantage over print marketing: the lack of material costs. When you think about how much money you might have to sink into printing and mailing on a traditional print marketing campaign, you can see how digital marketing allows you to tighten your belt without pinching your marketing power.

Seek Discounted Media Buys

Do you market your company through TV, radio, and billboards? These media options can work well, but they can also cost a ton of money. Your first instinct might be to drop these options from your overall marketing plan -- but before you do, consider the possibilities of getting some amazing deals in the current environment. Billboard and media providers are likely hurting as some of their clients pull away from these channels, so try pushing for special deals and discounts. You might be amazed at how much more media time and space you can buy for what you've paid in the past (or even less).

Make Your Content More Compelling

Remember the point about investing in smarter marketing strategies to get better value from your efforts? Well, the same goes for the content that drives your marketing. If your marketing content doesn't attract new eyeballs, inspire confidence, and compel sales, you might as well not do any marketing at all (and you can imagine how well that would work out for you). Instead of hacking away at your content writing attempts or allowing your current so-so content to keep doing nothing for you, you need to invest in professional marketing content creation. 

Fortunately, copywriting counts as one of the cheaper parts of an effective marketing plan even as it helps you persuade your audience to part with their own money. Best of all, you can hire a freelance copywriter on an as-needed basis instead of adding a new employee to your payroll. Contact me today so I can help your company bear up under this bear market!