It’s no secret that we’re in a recession. And while some businesses are struggling, others are thriving. How do they do it? They continue to market their businesses aggressively, even during tough times. In this article, we’ll discuss how to market your business during a recession and the competitive advantages of investing more into your marketing during an economic downturn.
When money is tight, companies often look for ways to reduce unnecessary spending – and unfortunately, marketing is usually the first to get cut. But during a recession, this is a major misstep. Pulling back on your marketing efforts means less visibility to new and existing customers. It may even convey to people that you’re closed for business at a time when you need to be communicating the exact opposite.
Let’s discuss why it’s so important to invest more into your marketing efforts when things are looking bleak, and how to market your business successfully.
Why Invest More in an Economic Downturn?
If your business is struggling, you might find the thought of investing more into marketing to be counterintuitive. But now is the prime time to get ahead of your competition.
Your competitors are likely cutting back on their marketing efforts, which means there’s less noise for you to compete with. And since people are spending more time at home, they’re also spending more time online. That means there’s a good chance they’ll come across your content if you’re putting it out there.
When the market recovers and enters a period of economic growth, your business will be better positioned to expand. What’s more, is that you likely won’t just recover the market share you lost, but you’ll increase it.
How to Market Your Business
Let’s face it: nearly every industry is saturated with brands and products that serve a similar function. Looking for a bite to eat? Start driving in any direction and you’ll eventually find food. Looking for an electrician? Do a quick search and you’ll find them in your area. Want to dye your dog’s hair pink and purple? Much to the dismay of little Fido, there are pet groomers across the country that will cater to your whims.
The point is: your business may be one-in-a-million, but it’s likely not one-of-a-kind. Your branding is what must set you apart. Finding and marketing your unique voice is what will give you the upper hand in your industry. And staying vocal during times of discord will grant more opportunity to build loyalty.
However when the economy slows down, people’s spending habits change. They become more cautious with their money and are less likely to make impulse purchases. This means that your same marketing methods may not work during tough times. Businesses need to work harder and be more creative in order to get noticed. So how can you do that? Let’s evaluate the top marketing methods that businesses can use to turn customers into conversions.
Collect & Analyze Data
Data drives marketing. But in times of economic crisis, what worked yesterday won’t necessarily work today. So, how do you navigate uncharted territory? Start with what you know.
The key to getting more from your marketing dollars is to analyze the data you’ve collected from past and present customers – then test the impact that past strategies might have today. While your tried-and-true tactics may not be as effective now, it’s the logical first step to take to see whether they’ll still work for you. Take the time to understand what platforms and strategies your customers most engage with. Look for trends and insights that will be the foundation of future campaigns.
If you’ve not been impressed with the results of your past campaigns, then it’s time to dust off your spyglass and look at your competition. See what your competitors are doing that has helped – or hurt them. Once you understand what’s giving them the competitive edge, build similar assets or campaigns using your own voice.
If you’ve explored new marketing tactics or worked with digital marketing agencies and you’re still not seeing the results you want, it’s time to evaluate the asset that all of your customers have their first online interaction with: your website!
User experience has a massive impact on whether or not a browser will become a buyer.
Think about it: when you search for “web design agency near me,” you expect to see search result pages that are flooded with links to eye-catching, responsive websites with catchy copy and a clear user flow. But imagine you click the first hyperlink and it leads to a lackluster site that is not responsive, filled with broken links, and has no clear navigation. What would be your first instinct? You’d immediately smash that “Back” button! This is something known as “bounce rate” and it’s an important metric to keep in mind when auditing your website!
New users – and even some returning users – have no loyalty to your brand yet. You need to immediately inform and engage them so as to keep them scrolling through your site. The longer they stay on your site, the more likely it is that they will convert to a customer.
Here are some metrics to review when deciding if your website is the cause of your marketing stalemate:
- Page load speed – each page on your website should load in under 3 seconds.
- Bounce rate – a high percentage is anything above 55%.
- Average time on page – users should be spending around a minute on each of your pages.
- Responsive – with more than 50% of people accessing websites on their mobile devices, your website needs to adjust to fit whatever device the user is on.
- Clear user flow – if a visitor lands on a website and there’s no clear calls to action or user flow, they’ll leave. Have friends, family members, or colleagues give you their feedback on your website. Review this landing page checklist, or take advantage of TheeDigital’s free website audit!
Google’s mission is “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible and useful.” In May 2022, the search engine titan released an algorithm update that places more emphasis on high-quality content. So if you’re looking to rank higher in SERPs, it’s time to invest in better content.
Create content that educates and informs your target audience. Show them how your product or service can help them save money or improve their lives. If you can solve a problem they’re facing, they’re more likely to do business with you.
Types of content marketing:
- Valuable blog content
- Monthly newsletter
- Promotional newsletter
- Videos to share on social
- Informative infographics
Social Media Marketing
Use social media to connect with your audience and build relationships. Share helpful tips, advice, and resources that will help them during this difficult time. Be sure to also post special offers and deals that will entice them to buy from you.
Be careful not to spread your marketing efforts too thin. While it’s a best practice to claim your social media handles across different platforms, make sure you’re focusing on the platforms in which your audience is actively engaged. Remember, you’ll have to respond to customer service inquiries, comments, and interactions with the content you share.
Keep your customers and clients updated on what’s going on with your business. Send them helpful information, deals, and coupons that they can use. If you have a physical location, let them know about any special hours or changes in operation. And if you’re selling products online, make it easy for them to find and purchase what they’re looking for.
Make sure your website is optimized for search engines. This will help people find you when they’re searching for businesses like yours. Use relevant keywords in your titles and descriptions, and create fresh content regularly.
Search engine optimization goes much deeper than keywords and fresh content. The quality of the content you’re producing, page speed, and user flow all impact how search engines index your website. That’s why recruiting the help of an experienced SEO agency is often the best way to invest your time and marketing dollars.
Invest in paid advertising to reach a larger audience. Google Ads and Facebook Ads are two popular options, but if your target audience tends to be on LinkedIn, Pinterest, or Tik Tok, there are advertising opportunities on almost every platform and search engine. Just be sure to track your results so that you know what’s working and what’s not.
Final Word: How to Market Your Business in a Recession
During an economic downturn, the economy doesn’t come screeching to a halt. People are still people – and they will still spend money. Make sure your brand is at the top of their minds and the top of their search results when they’re looking to buy.
While marketing during a recession can be challenging, it’s not impossible. By using the tips and strategies above, you can continue to grow your business, even when times are tough. So don’t give up – just keep marketing!
If you need deeper insights or assistance with your digital marketing, contact TheeDigital marketing and web design agency! We’ll start by conducting a free audit of your website and digital assets. Then, schedule a free call with us so we can talk about the audit, your current standing, goals, and how we can work together to turn the recession into revenue!
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