Economic forces in Canada and changing business conditions have left us all concerned about our existing marketing plans. While changes may be necessary to adjust to this new order, some may be tempted to abandon their marketing plans entirely. While every business is unique, here are three points of marketing advice to consider:
1) Don’t Panic
Panic is an emotional response that usually doesn’t serve a business well when clear thinking is needed. Pundits agree that panic reactions are exacerbating a jittery business world and have only contributed to its problems.
A panic reaction may be to excclude marketing efforts as part of cost cutting to keep a business running. I would argue that if rising costs, lower profits, and decreasing customer base need anything, it would be new prospects and additional new business. Marketing is the spark to drive new business your way. New markets can’t be efficiently uncovered and exploited without marketing of some sort.
2) Do Change
Someone once said that the definition of insanity is doing the same think over and over and expecting different results. In today’s economy this is particularly appropriate. If the results of your existing plan need to improve, change is necessary. Be it a wholesale change or minor tweaks, at least you will open an opportunity for different results.
Persistence, while a strong personality trait, needs to be viewed differently in the context of a nimble and relevant marketing plan. How about persistently tweaking your marketing strategy and tactics until you arrive at something that works?
3) Don’t Wait
The Canadian business landscape is rife with casualties that took booming markets for granted and sat shell-shocked waiting for things to improve. (Personally, I don’t want to be a victim, I’d rather be a fighter.)
Trying to wait things out and battening down all the expense hatches may not be an option for many businesses. Many large enterprises have deep enough pockets for mass layoffs and then a switch to “sleep” mode, ready to rise again when things improve. For medium enterprises, change is needed now and a recharged marketing plan should be front and centre. Why wait if you can’t afford to wait?
Rather than panicking and totally stopping any marketing plans completely, now is the time to review and refresh your plans to meet changing conditions head on. Not to say that dollars shouldn’t be carefully spent, but in most cases new customers and additional business are the key to success, or at least, to survival.
A sound business strategy includes marketing. “Don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater”.
Looking to implement or change a marketing plan for 2016? Check out Donna Kind’s Planning for 2016: Inbound Trends & Patterns Worth Noticing.