Monday, October 13, 2008

Marketing Will Save Your Business's Butt

There is no doubt we are in the midst of tough economic times. Unfortunately, thousands of businesses, both large and small, will fail during this time. But you're business doesn't have to be one of them.

Many business owners will have a knee-jerk reaction to the economic climate. They will start cutting expenses in order to keep the cash flow moving. In general, that's a good idea, provided the cuts don't effect what keeps bringing the customers in: marketing.

It's too easy to slash the marketing budget in order to save during difficult times. For many companies, marketing is a large expense so it's an easy item to slash. But this is a recipe for disaster.

If you've been in business for any length of time, you should know where your customers are coming from. Tell me, by what marketing methods are your customers coming to you? You better know.

During tough times, the pool of customers shrinks, so why would you choose to stop attracting customers? Your best bet would be to increase your marketing to make sure you continue to get your share of the available customers.

This is why you need to measure your marketing. That means you know how your customers are coming to you and which marketing methods are working to bring them to you.

In one of my businesses, billboards have been very successful attracting new customers. Another fruitful marketing tool has been referrals from existing customers. These are two areas of marketing that I will not slash, in fact, I'll take steps to increase them.

Yes, you need to cut the fat out of your expense budget, but don't cut marketing budget that feeds you.

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