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If your companys marketing department has had some surgery in recent months, there are ways to still effectively market your business and gain customer attention.

Given that more companies have to fine-tune their budgets in these tough economic times, it should not come as a surprise that many marketing departments have had a knife taken to them.

According to a Profit Impact of Marketing Strategies (PIMS) database, companies trimming marketing budgets had greater return on capital employed (ROCA) during the recession, but lower in the period of recovery. Meantime, companies that grew expenditure achieved a much higher ROCA during the recovery period and saw an additional 1.3% of the market share on average.

While the numbers may not mean much to your small business, it is a good idea to review your budget options and see where expenditures can be trimmed other than marketing.

First And Foremost, Dont Panic

Too many marketing heads view budget cuts as the writing on the wall that their jobs and the jobs of those on their team are in jeopardy.

Many companies are cutting departmental budgets, so this is not something out of the ordinary; view it as an opportunity to fine-tune your department and do better with less.

As more companies look to get the most for their dollars, marketing teams need to zero in on what works best to promote the company and trim away those areas that are less than productive.

In order to be most productive:

1. Sit down and look at each client you deal with;

2. See where there is room for addition and subtraction;

3. Determine where you can be more creative;

4. Most importantly, dont overlook your present clients.

Remember, lining up new clients is always more of a challenge than taking care of the present ones, so make sure youre only gaining clients and not losing them.

What Is The Competition Up To?

Another factor to keep in mind is that your competition is likely also toying with its marketing department so now is a very good time to devote extra hours and effort to marketing your company.

Just as more people tend to try and start a home business after being laid off from a company, a tough economy can be a great time to ramp up your marketing efforts, given that your competitors may just assume youre cutting back too.

Are You Anti-social?

A tough economy is also a great time to review just how you are marketing your company. Are you taking advantage of the free opportunities sitting out there for you?

A prime example is social media, which is free and a great way to get eyes focused on your company.

If your company Twitter and Facebook accounts are just sitting there idle, then youre missing out on a great way to promote the business. With more and more customers using social media to browse for deals and learn more about company products and services, why wouldnt you want to promote these tools?

The Customer Knows Best

Finally, keep all ears tuned into your customers.

They too are likely feeling the pinch of these tough economic times, so what they have to say to you is important. If theyre looking for certain product enhancements, discounts, etc. sit down and consider if you can meet their expectations.

It sounds silly to remind you, but minus your customers you have no business.

Make it your business in these challenging economic times to move forward and not retreat.

Think about it, when is the last time someone won something by retreating?

Dave Thomas

Dave Thomas is an expert writer on items like voip phone systems and is based in San Diego, California. He writes extensively for an online resource that provides expert advice for small business owners and entrepreneurs at Resource Nation.

Resource Nation

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