15 Dec 2015

Calgary Marketing When Times Get Rough

When there is a downturn in the economy the first thing that most companies do, whether they are directly in it’s path or not, is tighten all the purse strings right across the board. It’s a knee jerk reaction that is totally understandable, but in most cases not the right thing to do. If you want to make sales in Calgary, Calgary marketing is worth investing in.

Marketing is like rowing up a river. You are either going backwards, or forwards – there is no ‘stationary’ when you live in a current. If you take time out of marketing your company and brand development you will lose ground. If times are hard you can`t afford to drop rankings as this is ground you have to make up at some point, and it will be a long hard, expensive slog, to pull even, let alone get back to the top. It’s easier, and cheaper, to keep moving forward at a sustained slower pace, than to try and jump back into the limelight after a prolonged absence.

Research bears out that companies who spend more on their Calgary marketing budget have increased success in their industry, the only proviso is if the competition also increase their budget the gap is lessened. It would seem that niche targeted marketing is especially valuable when the market is slow as it seeks out those that are actively seeking the product or service you provide.

The value of your marketing increases for a second time when the recession is over because that is the time that everyone else scrambles to serge through into pole position. If you have crafted a sustained marketing campaign during the down turn in economics, then you have a solid foundation to build on. Your brand is known and respected for weathering the storm, which increases your company credibility.

This confidence in your brand is not only built in your chosen demographic, but also with your suppliers and your own staff. If you are continuing to bring in sales that confidence leeches into the lives of those who deal with you. You will not be the only one having a rough ride and knowing that there is a constant stream of work gives a feeling security to everyone who works with you, and that is confidence money can’t buy.

A downturn economy may be the time to employ your Calgary marketing budget in a smarter way, making less money work harder without losing any traction.

Here are a few suggestions to help you use your marketing budget wisely:

STAY CONNECTED

A downturn is no time to give up anything that works. Put the same amount of time and effort in staying connected with those customers you have already gained. Research suggests that 80% of all orders come from repeat customers, so if you aren’t concentrating on them, now is the time. They are already converted to your company brand and are willing to buy your product, so why not maximize on that.

Online marketing and digital communication, like email campaigns, are low cost (read into that, no cost) and very effective. Social media can be worked to bring in new customers with a little adaptation of your current strategies, and a little paid promotion. The days of free campaigns on social media are over, but a little money still goes a long way.

Another great aspect of digital marketing is that if you keep your current customers happy they will use it to advertise for you. Prospective clients will read the recommendations and know that they are genuine and unsolicited, which will go a long way to a sale and raise your brand awareness – all for free!

FOCUS ON CUSTOMER SERVICE

One aspect of your Calgary marketing campaign that is often overlooked is your customer service. IF you want people to advertise for you, then you need to offer excellent solutions to every customer touch point. Focus on your clients and make sure nothing is too much for you. Return calls promptly, make sure you have someone take over your duties if you are away and keep customers informed.

Above all, make your customers feel they are important.

MAKE IT EASY ON YOUR CUSTOMERS

When the going is good for Calgary marketing it’s easy to overlook the simple things that make a difference. One thing you need to do during a downturn is to make sure it’s easy for your customers and prospective customers to get hold of you.

Simple things like making sure your contact details, including your email address, is on all your communication or checking your details are correct make all the difference between a new customer and a missed opportunity. One customer we worked with was struggling. We got his company on the first page on Google, but still a disappointing number of leads – the reason? The company phone number was out by a digit on Google. When it was changed, the enquiries started to steadily flow in.

Don’t be afraid of putting your phone number and url on social media posts. The easier it is for your chosen demographic to get hold of you, the more leads will feed back to your company.

REARRANGE YOUR RESOURCES

Marketing in a downturn economy is a great time to make the resources you do have lean. Do no hesitate to rearrange resources that you currently have to maximize efficiency. Create a dedicated team for each marketing campaign, drawing together the right people with the strengths you need. Make it known that you welcome ideas and suggestions for marketing and look for new ideas that will open you out to a new audience. A good idea is a good idea – whoever brings it up.

Whatever you do you need keep in mind your long term plan, making sure it is realistic and achievable. Set a budget and keep this in mind, especially if you have drawn together a dream team who do not have a history in sales or marketing and are not used to working with budget restraints. The goal of this rearrangement is to make your marketing budget work harder and smarter, not go spiraling out of control.

BRAINSTORM

Spend a little time brainstorming ideas with those on your dream team, then make sure you make a note of them so that you can use them in future campaigns. Do not discount simple ideas as they can be just as effective as complicated ones – and be significantly cheaper.

Marketing in a downturn is no time to pull back on your marketing campaigns or skimp on your budget. In fact, research suggests spending more to increase incoming leads is the way to weather a recession. If you try these strategies and you find they don’t bring in the results you expect, then you may need to call in a professional Calgary marketing company. Take it from us, a successful marketing company that understands the market and can work it to your advantage.

We do it every day.

 

Resources:

http://www.millwardbrown.com/docs/default-source/insight-documents/points-of-view/MillwardBrown_POV_MarketingDuringRecessionToSpendNotToSpend.pdf

http://hbswk.hbs.edu/item/5878.html

http://arcreactions.com/services/brand-development/

http://www.businessweek.com/innovate/content/may2009/id2009051_889327.htm