By: Michael Palmer
What are the 5 most important marketing tactics now that we are in a recession? The same five we used when we weren’t in a recession. Being careful about spending your marketing funds is not new news. As marketers, that’s exactly what we should be focusing on. Sure times are tougher, and each of us will have to find new ways to drive increased value into our products or services because our customers are spending their dollars more judiciously. But those of us who have just woken up, CFO's will be asking us why we have had their heads in the sand, why are you spending marketing dollars at all, why are you spending them on TV, why are you spending them on the Super Bowl, why are your commercials so expensive, why, why, why? That’s their job, to understand what is the best way to invest the company’s money. If we marketers cannot stand the heat, we ought to get out of the kitchen.
So what are the top five ways to ensure that your marketing effort is most effective?
- Insights – Know your customer better than anyone else in your organization. Understand their unarticulated needs, those they cannot tell you about, but formulate how they act, or would act. To discover these hidden gems requires living with your customers, seeing how they act and react. Knowing your customer is the key to making everything else happen.
- Be a Growth Champion – Elevate the role of marketing; be the force within your organization that turns marketing into a profit generator. Innovate. Find new revenue streams building both top and bottom lines. Marketing has the innate ability to create revenue, but it takes a big idea to do so. And that takes guts, determination and a desire to lead, not just serve. Finally, make sure you are on the same page as your CEO. Too many marketers are still doing stuff versus providing their management with the ideas that will drive the company’s agenda. Be strategic, not tactical. No one gets rewarded today for having completed a number of projects. Did the action you took drive shareholder value, build brand equity, or create a new stream of revenue? If not, don’t do those things any more.
- Segment – You cannot be everything to everyone. Focus on who your target is, what is your brand DNA, and how your brand can satisfy the target you’ve chosen better than your competitors.
- Market Internally – Partnerships are critical. Marketers today must bring internal and external teams together. The sum is greater than the whole. First, other team members not only have great ideas, but they also make executing ideas easier if they are on board. Secondly, every member of your organization is in marketing. From the phone operator to the delivery team – if anyone does not put the customer first, then all else will eventually fail.
- Measure – knowing what’s working and what's not is the only way to ensure we continually put our resources (both money and people) against the right objectives. If you cannot measure your results or are not going to change your direction when you receive feedback, don’t take any action. Only do what you can prove will work. Not sure? Then adopt a test, fail, expand methodology.
Now you’re ready to market in a recession – and should you need help honing your own or your team’s skills – the ANA School of Marketing can help. Check out our offerings http://www.ana.net/careers/content/careers.Technorati tags: recession marketing consumer insights internal branding ANA career development target audience