It’s virtually automatic, sadly, that when the economy softens, businesses cut marketing first. And like many reactions, this one is almost always the wrong thing to do.
Marketing shouldn’t be an expense. When properly created and executed, marketing should result in more dollars in than dollars out. But before you get the idea that I’m some kind of Ivory Tower egghead, believe me, I understand how difficult it is to commit marketing dollars when dollar availability is declining due to a recession.
That’s why marketing in the 21st century is so exciting. Small businesses have sooo many more ways to penetrate the market including, and especially, on-line marketing. This universe has many characteristics that are perfect for a small business’ need to be efficient and flexible. For example:
1. Virtually all activity can be monitored – very close to real time.
2. Testing is easy – making adjustments is easier.
3. There is no marketing activity that is less expensive per unit of opportunity.
One of the most recent improvements to on-line marketing is the increased effectiveness of local search. Now a dry cleaner, restaurant, auto mechanic or any other business that serves a local market with traditional store-front products and services can use pay-per-click strategies that they only pay for when someone is looking to buy what the marketer sell in that market area.
Every small business should be investing in some level of local search key word marketing. It could be the difference between failing and surviving, or surviving and thriving.
Recently, on my small business radio program, The Small Business Advocate Show, I interviewed a couple of my Brain Trust members who know all about the power of on-line marketing. First, Robert Bly, author of Fool-Proof Marketing, and then Carolyn Rhinebarger, Chief Brainstormer at Strategic Guru, Inc. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear what these world-class experts have to say. And, of course, be sure to leave your thoughts.
For Bob Bly
For Carolyn Rhinebarger