Doing business without advertising is like winking in the dark

Doing business without advertising is like winking in the dark. You know what you are doing but nobody else does.

Often times when a recession happens, businesses, fearful of declining revenue, begin to cut back in various areas, including their advertising and marketing spend.

Industry experts still agree, in the midst of COVID-19 challenging business times, and advise brands not to freeze or reduce their spend during this pandemic. But where are the opportunities for brands to talk to customers?

Brand owners have long memories but the fact is that consumers don't.

In the aftermath of the last recession in 2008, advertising spend dropped like a stone. Broken out by platform, newspaper spending dropped the most then radio, followed by magazines, tv, out-of-home  and online.

A number of research studies going back over the last 100 years consistently point out the advantages of maintaining or even increasing advertising and marketing budgets during a weaker economy.

Those advertisers that maintained or grew their spend increased sales and market share during the recession and afterwards. Check out the Hilton story as this is a great example of staying focused on the long game.

Companies with brands worth billions that have been around for decades do not let them die in a recession. Brands try to stay in consumer's minds, even if consumer spending falls, as it has been shown over and over again during recessions. It pays to keep your brand top of mind and find innovative ways to cut through the digital crowd.

Brands have to remind consumers that they still exist, and research backs this up as looking back over many decades, in times of crisis turning off advertising slows down recovery. Brands with longevity in the market show the way as they never give advertising a miss, they maintain their position no matter how bad things get. They want to be there for the recovery.

Working hard to maintain presence in the market so that those consumers return to their trusted brands. There’s a big upside here in terms of reminding customers of the benefits that they’ve experienced, how they’ve met customer needs, which is why this is not the time to go dark.

Building up rapport again is not cheap nor easy so those who have stayed in the promotional market at consumer level will be the real winners.

There is a definite increase in media consumption, particularly in the online world, which is why brands should look at ways in which they can cut through the crowded online space.

Thanks to the pandemic, brands now have new opportunities to reach consumers  as they emerge from their homes as we go back down through lockdown levels.

Various studies and analysis of the market have shown that 75 percent of consumers are expanding the range of items purchased.

With people in lockdown comes an increase of those household decision makers, each with preferences and requirements that pre COVID-19 were not necessarily on the spot to be catered to.

Making sure your brand is talking all through lockdown is vital to ensure that you are ready not in the dark as customers break out and spend, either on a staycation in the same city or around New Zealand.