February 28, 2023

Investing in marketing during a recession: Why it’s more important than ever

By Paul Rochon

It’s no secret that the news paints a bleak picture of our current economic climate. It’s easy to get discouraged by constant stories of rising inflation, mass layoffs in the tech sector and speculation of a looming recession.

However, despite the somber financial headlines indicating a disheartening outlook, the data suggests that our current economic climate is proving to be more encouraging than anticipated.

Regardless, businesses are always looking for ways to cut costs during challenging times. And what’s one of the first things many business owners are tempted to do?

Slash their marketing budgets.

But savvy leaders know that being proactive and creative with their marketing can help them make it through the storm.

Taking a step back and putting some thought into how you can smartly invest in marketing may be the best way for your business to not only endure economic instability, but to come out even stronger on the other side.

Building brand awareness: an expense or an investment?

There seems to be an underlying determination — among the business owners we speak with — to tackle these tough times head-on. Rather than just weathering the storm of economic uncertainty, many organizations are embracing new opportunities with gusto and setting their sights on growth.

Part of it comes from their perception of marketing.

Ask yourself, do you view marketing as:

  1. An expense that needs to be cut, or
  2. An investment as an engine for growth?

If you want your business to survive and thrive during a recession, a smart investment in marketing could be the key.

Marginalizing it could spell disaster.

Investing in marketing during a downturn is your opportunity to capitalize on the moment while competitors are too distracted by cutting costs. It’s an effective way to safeguard and even expand your market share, while many competitors cut back on such investments and disappear from their target audiences’ radar.

Marketing during a downturn

Multiple studies have shown the wisdom of investing in marketing during economic downturns.

Businesses that recognize the value of marketing, and commit to maintain their investment, are rewarded with greater success down the road. It’s been proven time and again – from The Great Depression to more recent events like the dotcom bubble and 2008 global financial crisis. Investing in moments of market downturns can set you up for incredible growth when the economy eventually rebounds.

And rebound it will – it always does!

But remember, your marketing encompasses owned content, websites, social media, and case studies, as well as paid actions such as advertising, conference events, lead generation activities, direct mail, and many other items. 

Attract new customers and keep the ones you have

If you have a great product or service — and you market your business professionally — history has proven time and again that your investment will be rewarded.

  • Tough competition: A recession can lead to an increase in competition as businesses fight for a smaller pool of consumers. A strong marketing strategy will help you to stand out and attract customers in a crowded market.
  • Cost-effective marketing: During a recession, businesses have the opportunity to take advantage of lower advertising costs. With less competition for ad space, businesses can get more bang for their buck and reach a wider audience at a lower cost.
  • Building brand awareness: A recession can be a time to build brand awareness and establish your business as a leader in its industry. Continuing your marketing efforts sends a message of stability and resilience to customers and competitors alike.
  • Making connections: Consumers may be more cautious with their spending during a recession, but they are still making purchases. Marketing can help your business connect with consumers and understand their needs and concerns, which can lead to more targeted and effective marketing campaigns.

Bottom line – marketing is essential for any business

Investing in marketing during a time of recession may seem counterintuitive, but it’s been proven to provide businesses with a competitive edge and help them weather the economic storm. A well-planned and executed marketing strategy can increase brand awareness, connect with consumers, build relationships and ultimately drive sales and growth.

Ready to protect your business against economic turbulence? Investing in marketing is the key. Get in touch for an expert consultation – no strings attached! Beat the downturn with solid strategies today.