Every person who earns an income, whether as an employee or as a business owner, should be asking themselves how secure their income will be in 2009. Without doubt the current economic turmoil is putting pressure on the viability of many businesses and jobs. To survive, and even prosper in the chaos, one has really only two choices: reduce expenses, or increase sales.
For many, reducing expenses is often the first port of call when the going gets tough as it is the easiest option – provided you have some “fat” in your business.By all means cut as much as you can (you should be doing this anyway) but then, once this is done, what’s next? And, at what point does cutting more start affecting your product or service delivery standards?
As Warren Buffet is quoted as saying: “You want to learn from experience, but you want to learn from other people’s experience when you can!”
What we do know from experience is that the best way to continuously improve the bottom line is to regularly review your marketing and sales strategy and look for the gaps that can provide you with growth opportunities. We also know from experience that the companies that best survive the sort of economic downturn we are now faced with, are those that invest in sound marketing just at the time when everyone else is pulling back.
So… what’s your marketing strategy for 2009? And is it worth anything in the changed environment you are facing? Remember that marketing, done correctly, is the only business discipline that generates income and opportunities. But marketing based on hearsay, wishful thinking or any other thumbsuck will consume your time, energy and money for little or no return.
In reality, for 2009 you need to start from scratch and develop a marketing plan that will address your new challenges practically and realistically.
The benefits of developing a specific, targeted marketing plan unique to your circumstances include:
1)You thoroughly think through your current business trading options
2)You identify opportunities that can be turned into bottom line profits
3)You develop a step-by-step plan of action that removes the worry and stress and allows you to focus your thoughts, efforts, budget and activities
Now, more than ever, you need to become more marketing orientated if you want your business to survive and grow in 2009.