While the economy has improved some since the great recession of 2008, many industries across the country still have yet to see the kinds of revenue and sales numbers they saw pre-recession. While people aren’t giving up, either because they refuse, or they simply can’t afford to shut down – it leaves marketers in a unique position; one where they find themselves asking “how should I market my business in a slow economy?” There’s still money to be made, and companies will make it – but the marketing has to respect the new way that people make purchases, and this is an art form all in itself. Take a look, and let’s investigate how you can market your business in a down economy.
Adjusting Your Tone: A New Sales Approach
The recession changed a lot of things in America, and one of the greatest overarching themes to change fast was the abandonment of the sense of “endless excess” that people bought into – both mentally and actually. Companies no longer sold mortgages with insanely low approval qualification, auto makers dropped outrageous / gaudy brands like Hummer from their lineup. In turn, consumers recognized the pickle everyone was in, and changed their buying mindset to one much closer to that of their grandparent’s generation – the 1930s depression era, when you asked yourself one essential question before you bought anything “why do I really need this?” This is the question you’ll need to adapt to your sales and marketing approach from now on.
Marketing Your Business with “Recession” Tone
As you adapt your marketing strategy to the tone of recession era spending, it’s essential for you to adapt, and drop any language that talks about “spoil yourself” or “luxury”. Even if your product is in fact something totally unnecessary to people’s lives, or a luxury in essence, you can’t cast it that way. Even something like selling cruise ship packages should use language like “the opportunity to build something meaningful” or “very good deals on the lifetime goals you’ve had for years.” By changing the conversation to one of luxury and “splurging” to one of getting a great deal on something that’s truly necessary – you’ll see a noticeable increase in the amount of engagement and ultimately purchases of your products, over your competition that may still be pushing the “buy, buy, buy!” mentality of pre-recession era spending.
Marketing Mediums for a Slow Economy
In a slower economy, people are going to be more resistant to marketing messages in general – that much has already been established. What we haven’t covered however, is the best mediums to get through to a resistant, recession era customer group. These customers are going to put up natural blocks within popular 2000s digital marketing mediums like Paid Search, social, and email. Instead, try reaching out to them with a more traditional marketing medium like Print. With a strategy as simple as printing custom postcards, and including them in a direct mail campaign – you’ll not only be sure to reach customers more directly and effectively – you’ll also get them to actually read your unique marketing message, and rise above other companies that are still pushing “sell, sell, sell!” – and getting ignored in the process.
Know Your Audience
In marketing during a down economy, the overarching key to success is to simply consider the position people are in – the people that you’re trying to sell to. If you were facing the rapidly growing inflation, falling wages, and dismal job market of modern America – what would you want to hear? I bet you’d be pretty insulted by messages of “spend now!”… and you’d likely be refreshed by messages of “this is an essential purchase at a fantastic price!”