As many companies today cut back on catalog circulation and other marketing activities hoping to simply survive this rough stretch in the economy, smart marketers should seize this opportunity to grow market share and strengthen their businesses. This is the message that came out of a recent whitepaper, How to Beat the Bear: Seven Secrets to Recession-Proof Marketing, from e-mail marketing firm Silverpop on recession-proof marketing tactics, from which several tips are provided here.
1. Determine your metrics. Figure out exactly where your upper management stands in measuring success in terms of return on investment (ROI) and what levels of return it expects. This is especially critical during an economic slump when marketers are under increasing pressure to deliver measurable results and clearly demonstrate the value they provide.
The whitepaper recommends the following metrics to track ROI:
* total sales generated by marketing;
* incremental sales from existing customers generated by marketing;
* conversion rates; and
* time to conversion.
Use this information to ensure that successful programs are continued and funding for unsuccessful programs is allocated elsewhere. E-mail marketers are particularly well-positioned to provide marketing support during a recession, delivering highly measurable and targeted campaigns, the whitepaper notes.
2. Focus on your existing customers. Acquiring new customers is always more expensive than keeping the ones you already have. And during tough economic times, consumers are less likely to take risks with new companies or products, preferring to stick with trusted sources and brands they know, the whitepaper points out. With that in mind, serve the needs of existing customers in hopes of turning them into loyal brand advocates. Segment your marketing messages for improved relevance. Research and implement automated lifecycle campaigns based on surveys, customer feedback, etc.
This can result in particularly high yields during tough economic times and has the added benefit of ultimately freeing up marketers to fine-tune across all channels, rather than simply executing campaign after campaign, the whitepaper says.