When recession hits, the message becomes all important.
When the economy is booming, it’s easy to sell. People feel good about themselves and their futures and they have a little cash in their pockets. They’ll try new products and services more readily than when things are looking glum.
As we head down the slippery slope of recession, that disposable income is drying up. As of January 2008, unemployment was up to a staggering 5% nationally, retailers suffered a dismal holiday season and an even more alarming January with slower than expected growth, and even a downturn in sales in certain key chain stores.
Quite naturally, when people are worried about losing their jobs and simply putting food on the table (or gas in the cars, which seems to be the greater expense these days), there is a great re-prioritization in the commodity and service department.
What does recession mean for marketing?
It means, simply, that you need to go back to basics. In a recent article by MediaPost’s Email Insider, Lessons Learned From The Writers’ Strike, Melinda Krueger suggests that we take a lesson from network television and concentrate on our content and how it’s presented.
People are still interested in the same things they always were:
They’ve just re-prioritized their lives. Here’s how you can tailor your message to appeal to an audience with tighter purse strings:
- Good, concise copy
- Fun and interesting message
- Solid, valuable product or service
- Charitable or globally responsible message
Even in bad times—especially in bad times—people feel good about helping other people or the environment. Help them to do that and you will have a sale. Your email list is the most valuable marketing tool you have at your disposal. Take care of your prospects and customers and they’ll take care of you.
Any thoughts on meaningful messages?
Originally posted on my hosted WordPress Blog, March 12, 2008.