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This year, Gotham celebrates its 20 year anniversary as a strategic marketing firm. This year also marks the third recession we have endured during those 20 years.
Advertising agencies are usually “first in, first out” of a recession, due to the popular theory that marketing is an “optional expense.” At the sniff of economic turmoil, companies often reduce their marketing to conserve cash. When they get a sense that things are recovering, they expect to capture market share due to weakened competition and pent up demand in the marketplace.
I would argue that a theory’s popularity, doesn’t necessarily make it right. Smarter marketers know to continue their efforts in good times and bad. With turbulent times come a reduction of clutter in communication channels and bargain basement deals on media buys.
We are now in month 18 of the 2008-09 recession, and things WILL return to normalcy. They always do. In fact, most recessions average 16 months. Barring some unforeseen craziness, you can expect your phone to start ringing with business again soon, if you have “stayed the course” from a marketing standpoint.
If you have been on the sidelines, in a spider hole or some other form of hiding until the worst is over, you may want to consider stepping back into the game right now.
Markets have the same needs they had before- there is still demand for your products and services; people have just delayed gratification or done without. Why not market now, get the word out about your products while it’s affordable and your message will be heard?
Our phones have rung more in April 2009 than in the past six months. We have vigorously marketed throughout the downturn, and we fully intend to reap the rewards from staying omnipresent.
Our competition has been compromised. Some have released their entire staff, and some have gone completely out of business. What are their former clients going to do when they need a marketing campaign? My hope is that the work we have done to get our message out will occur to them once the marketing floodgates open.
By Woody Stoudemire