by Kenneth Rudich
With the economy slumping, many businesses have been forced to trim costs wherever they can. Under the circumstances, this is a natural and prudent course of action.
But it is not necessarily a good idea to do it straight across the board. In fact, it may be counterproductive in at least one area, possibly even deadly.
In every recession of the last thirty years I’ve heard the same piece of advice consistently given out by those with a knack for survival. It goes something like this: in the face of an economic downturn, you should try to maintain or even increase your marketing promotion investment. After all, it’s the one area of your business that offers a reason to keep hope alive in the midst of a fragile economy.
internet marketing now more than ever
Those who believed this was true in the past may have more reason than ever to believe in it now.
One of the things that makes this recession unique – apart from the magnitude of it – is the degree to which the internet has grown as a cost-effective mechanism for marketing and promotion.
The timing has never been better to get involved with internet marketing if you haven’t already, or to consider broadening your initiative if you already have. The reach of it, combined with an estimated 400 million daily searches, presents an untold potential for those willing to give it a try.
Part of what makes the timing so good is the element of novelty it continues to hold. Despite the gains it has made, internet marketing is still in its infancy. The ramifications of this can work to your advantage.
First, the idea of what constitutes best practices is constantly evolving as the tools and techniques get better and better. This makes it hard for any business to become so thoroughly entrenched as to be entirely safe. By keeping the playing field fluid and flowing, the internet consistently provides an equal opportunity for all. Any business can suddenly soar based off its internet marketing success. Many already have (think Zappos, Amazon, Google, Facebook and others who seemingly came out of nowhere), and many more undoubtedly will.
Second, while the cost of internet marketing is comparatively low when paired against traditional options, it may be even lower yet while in the throes of a recession.
Businesses that offer internet marketing services are prone to the consequences of a turbulent economy like anyone else. They too are concerned with keeping themselves afloat. It’s a competitive field, and it’s become something of a buyer’s market.
That may suck for them but it’s good for you. For instance, SEO providers typically offer different package deals to enhance their appeal across businesses of varying sizes. One of the more interesting package deals I’ve seen of late, however, is called “No Results, No Pay.” In other words, the client only pays if he or she gets measurable results. It completely eliminates the upfront risk normally associated with this kind of investment. Now how often do you come across a deal like that?
Package deals like this reflect the sobering reality of a flagging economy. It’s a scenario straight out of Herb Cohen’s best-selling book, “You can Negotiate Anything.” In this case, you probably can negotiate anything. That tidbit of knowledge alone should cause the negotiator in you to stir with restless ambition.
If you still have no plans to invest in internet marketing, or see no reason to consider expanding on what you’re currently doing to extract more benefits out of it, then I suggest you shutter the windows and lock the doors. Because, truth be told, you probably already have but just don’t know it yet.