We're having to analyse the return of every single penny we spend in marketing, so it is becoming much more difficult to justify any significant investment unless the ROI can be clearly measured and is at the desired amount. The risk associated is perceived to be too high. Likewise, the risk of trying out new digital marketing techniques to see if they will work or won’t work can also be perceived to be too high.
So what is the typical behaviour demonstrated by organisations when the economic climate takes a downturn? Well, it would appear to be a retraction back into their comfort zones, ride out the storm, play it safe in marketing terms and rely on your “core business” to see you through.
So where does that get you? You may achieve a static position with maybe some growth from existing customers if you’re very, very lucky.
A downturn is the perfect time to be adventurous (just look at the UK punk movement in the mid to late 70’s... ask Vivienne Westwood) and take advantage of the comfort zone behaviour of your competition. This doesn’t need a big financial investment and some of the most innovative and creative ideas during these times can really make you stand out and take a leap ahead of your competitors. It will set you up to be much better placed when the climate starts to take an upturn.
Creating a digital dialogue with your target audience (new and existing) by utilising social media effectively and giving them content and creative that engages them will enhance your brand and create higher degrees of visibility. And it doesn’t have to cost an arm and a leg either.
Taking calculated risks in this area will help you continually to operate in the “window of opportunity” and extend your reach. Integrating the various types of social media together and in sync with the more comfort zone marketing will reap big rewards.
So... go set up your friendfeed, and have your tweets pointing to your blog containing images from your flickr account which can be viewed within your Ning online social community. Of course, the other good thing is its performance can all be measured...so should help you justify the spend with the bean counters.