You know the saying: “When the going gets tough, the tough get going.” COVID-19 sure has made times tough for all of us right now. And while it’s important to take our time to absorb what’s happening around us, it’s also vital to get up and keep moving forward.
Unfortunately, during times of crisis, organizations must look to areas where they can save money. The first place business owners and nonprofit directors look when cutting back is, you guessed it, marketing. We get why that’s a common reaction. But we’d also like to explain why a strong marketing presence is a GOOD thing in this right now.
Your marketing budget: Get out of it what you put in.
During economic hardships, business owners and nonprofit executive directors alike often view marketing as a postponable service. Marketing is needed and desired. But, it is often seen as something that can be reasonably put off for brighter days ahead.
The fact is, well-planned marketing budgets are essential to growing your organization. And they most definitely shouldn’t be the first area of your organization to get cut.
Marketing is the bridge between your products or services and your customers. It develops relationships, creates loyalty, builds credibility and cements a strong reputation for your brand. Without a presence in the market, your risk of losing each of these essential growth elements skyrockets.
Differentiate yourself from the crowd by cutting your marketing budget last.
Why do businesses and nonprofits look to cut their marketing budget first? Well, many owners and executive directors use the following statements as justification: “My customers aren’t going to forget about us overnight,” “Marketing is just a fluff service anyway,” or the most common phrase, “Everybody else is doing it!”
While there is some truth behind those statements (except, the second one of course!), consider the benefits of NOT doing what everybody else is doing. Your competitors are cutting marketing budgets? Good! This gives you an opportunity to maintain and even grow your brand in a less crowded space. Keep your name in the minds of consumers while your competitors start quickly fading away.
Avoid long-term issues resulting from reduced marketing budgets.
To be completely frank, reducing marketing budgets has the possibility to help your organization in the short-term. But like most quick fixes, it will provide only temporary relief. Once all is said and done, reducing or cutting your marketing budget will leave your organization emerging from the economic hardship weaker and less profitable.
Take Ford Motor Company, for example. Chevrolet consistently outsold Ford during The Great Depression. Why? One reason is that General Motors spent more on advertising for Chevrolet with the use of outdoor billboards and radio than Ford did for comparable cars.
In another study, according to McGraw-Hill Research’s look at the 1985 recession, companies that either maintained or increased their ad budgets during that time experienced a 256% increase in sales versus companies that cut their ad budgets.
Part of the reason General Motors was so successful with Chevrolet in the 1930s is because they realigned their product offerings to fit the needs of a consumer base with less money to spend. Like GM, we want you to find comfort in the fact that Firespring is here for you always—especially during times of uncertainty.
To help you keep your organization moving forward, we created six customized marketing programs at a greatly reduced price. Check them out, and let’s see how we can help you.
Quick Marketing Activation Programs
Free Personalized Virtual Strategy Session: Is your organization’s rhythm disrupted and you aren’t sure what to do next? Schedule a one-on-one 30-minute strategy session (via phone or virtual meeting) with one of our marketing strategists—at no charge to you.
Digital Fundraising Campaign: In-person fundraising events are cancelled or postponed until who knows when. But, your donors are still out there to support you! Put our Digital Fundraising marketing program to work for your organization with integrated tools to keep your supporters engaged and showing up for you.
Building Customer Connections: You have an amazing organization, but if you aren’t reaching your audience, or if you’re not exactly sure you’re targeting the right people in the first place, you’re wasting valuable time and money. Now is the time to get laser-focused on getting to know your customers in a strategic way and deliver them messaging they’ll respond to.
Get Discovered Online: In the vast sea of search results, how are you standing out? Especially now, it’s crucial to be showing up for those looking for you. We have your back with a plan to quickly get you in Google’s good graces. We see you. Now get your audience to see you too.
Association Outreach: Even though it’s difficult, making connections is turning out to be imperative in today’s climate. Reaching your donors and supporters now in a personal way amidst not-in-person circumstances is key to continuing your mission. Firespring’s set of engaging outreach tools will equip you to achieve just that.
Education Recruitment: Physical tours and campus exploration came to a halt, but you can still give prospects an experience in an online setting. While school is closed, Firespring can help you open your digital doors and get students, parents and supporters interacting with you in meaningful ways.