Over a long period of time my personal opinion of marketing was not the best one! I summarised this discipline always as 'bullshit bingo' - marketeers were offended (my wife is one of them) and colleagues thought I was too pushy... what I wanted to say with this term was, that marketing is just a lot of well chosen words and pretty pictures and that everyone with some street smarts can pull out a good marketing campaign!
I'm now less than 6 months in my new role as a Business Director of a marketing agency, surrounded by dozens of experts (10+ years of experience in their discipline) and I love it! Why? It's so much more than just words and pictures and if you are doing marketing the right way, it's a tremendous enabler for every business. There is so much more depth to it than I ever thought.
My new holistic marketing view:
To keep it short - I hereby publicly apologise for being wrong about marketing in the past!
WARC reported that the global advertising spend will fall by 8.1% in 2020 and we all know why - COVID'19. We have all read far too much about the pandemic and it's impact so I'll come straight to the point:
The new norm won't disappear very soon. Even IF we find a vaccine - scientists are still saying IF and not WHEN - we still don't know if the vaccine will resolve all limitations we are experiencing at the moment. The other unknown is when will we hit the right vaccination level for the population to stop the spread - it won't happen over night, that's for sure.
As a former risk manager I tried to get a grip on the situation and asked myself what would be the best, most likely and worst case outcomes. I read lots of different but ones but this, for me, was the best content regarding 'when will life return to normal?':
Source: Visual Capitalist
My conclusion is
As a responsible business leader I'm came to the conclusion that I need to accept the situation and adapt my understanding of the world and how business will be done in the future.
When I look at these scenarios I wonder is NOW the right time to invest in marketing again?
Ask yourself these 2 simple questions:
I see it very simply - in the end, a business wants to grow or maintain their yearly revenue & profit and marketing is an enabler to reach these business goals!
So why did you reduce your marketing spend so far in 2020?
"We don't know what will happen, that's why we cut costs as much as possible to be more resilient for the unknown future."
Absolutely valid and the right risk averse approach, but how much more clarity do you need to start investing again?
Opportunities are coming with risks and your competitors don't sleep, so don't miss the boat!
"Our clients have a tough time ahead and some of them are maybe not resilient enough. Promoting our services doesn't feel right in the current situation."
Why is promoting your service or product ethically not correct? Based on the assumption that your offering is really solving a real-world problem for your client and it really creates value for them then maybe your service swings your client from the break to the make point. There are many great examples out there of how businesses are helping their clients in one or another way; just be creative!
BUT do you have the luxury to wait for better times?
Once a wise man (Philip Kotler) said "Fish where the fish are"! But what should you do when the pond has less fish in it? Should you stop fishing or try harder? This brings me to my final question - What is the impact for your business if the marketing activities are significantly reduced?
I think there are not many companies out there who can afford these consequences - lucky for you if you are one of them!
I also need to put my money where my mouth is and give you marketing ideas, which you can execute without professional help (or feel free to ask us!):
Don't forget marketing is an enabler for your business success and NOW is the right time to market your business more than ever before.
I hope this blog triggered a thought process on your side! If you need to talk to experts, even if you just have general questions, our team are here to help, just book a meeting with us using the stylish CTA here!