Friday, August 14, 2009

Mitch Drew’s TOP FIVE reasons you should advertise during tough times.

Why a soft economy is an opportunity to take a few rounds out of your competition and gain market share…for LESS MONEY.

Reason Number One: History shows many advertisers raid their ad budget during tough times.

History has proven that in tough times businesses tend to use their advertising budget as a slush fund. It’s an easy place to get cash that is used to fund everything from Payroll to Rent. The ad budget and the costs surrounding the advertising and marketing efforts are easy targets during tough times. They can be easily raided without any immediate negative effects.

One of America’s great advertising giants David Ogilvy had this to say:

“ I avoid clients for whom advertising is only a marginal factor in their marketing mix. They have an awkward tendency to raid their advertising appropriations whenever they need cash for other purposes”.

If your competition is spending their ad budget on other purposes and NOT on advertising…you have an opportunity to move market share away from them. Let the other guy raid his budget and lose business momentum while you keep a modest yet firm foothold in the mind of the consumer.

Reason Number Two: When demand for advertising products are low…so is the price.

What if you could cut your ad budget by 50% and get the same about of advertising you did spending 100%? What if you could spend $1 and get $1.50 or $2 or even $3 worth of advertising value for the same dollar? During tough times, advertising takes a big hit and with that hit comes new and creative ways to make advertising dollars work harder. Take a look at some of the ways you can purchase advertising and bring in outside media buyers or agents to help you. Make a ‘Wish List’ of some of the TV stations, radio stations, magazines or other ad products that you’ve wanted to buy but couldn’t afford in the past and MAKE THEM AN OFFER. Demand is down…prices are low…you can make a small budget look like a medium budget and a medium budget look HUGE.

Reason Number Three: Your customers are ready to change brands now.

When the consumer is flush, they fly on the airlines they want to fly, stay in the hotels they like to stay, eat in the restaurants and so on. When the consumer is tight for cash they SHOP AROUND. Consumers are willing to say goodbye to the brands they know and love if they are going to get a better price OR better value with another brand. This means that your competitors are vulnerable to you poaching customers from them like never before (they can poach from YOU as well). Advertising your value statement, prices, offers, incentives and other reasons a consumer should switch to (or stay with) your brand is more important NOW as consumers from Detroit to West Palm Beach have been hit and need to find better deals on everything that they consume.

Reason Number Four: Things are going to get better!

We are already seeing signs that things are getting better and the economy is turning around. Most seasoned advertisers know that the discipline of advertising is not about TODAY, it’s about TOMORROW. When this market starts to lift and more advertising starts to fill the minds of consumers, your current advertising will have already made an impression and you will benefit from the investment. Advertise now when ads are cheap and build brand awareness/market share now so that when things start getting better you can stay in a ‘maintenance mode’ of advertising because you will have already gained momentum. Your competition might just wake up late and have to start spending and promoting from scratch in order to compete against you.

Reason Number Five: Advertising works in good times and bad times.

Advertising is one of the oldest forms of communication. It has been used for millions of years as a way to let people know what is available to them, at what price and at what location. It’s a simple and effective way of sending a sales force out into the world to let hundreds, thousands and millions of potential customers know that you are open for business.

Use effectively it is a ‘game changer’. It has the ability to change what we eat and where we eat it. What we drive and where we drive it. Where we go and how we get there. What we do and how we do it. Who we are and why we want to be that person.

Advertising is the foot on the accelerator that drives capitalism and without it, no product would ever move from a shelf.

Mitch Drew

Mitch Drew is the moderator of MITCH-TV. He is a lifetime advertising practitioner who lives in Vancouver, Canada and works in the TV advertising business at Joytv and VisionTV. He can be contacted at

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