18 May 2023 Back

When times are tough, double down - Marketing as an investment.

MarketingEconomic Uncertainty

Many businesses have undergone stress and financial pressure over the last two years. During periods of economic turmoil, such as that brought about by the Covid19 Pandemic, businesses are often forced to consider ways to cut costs in order to survive.  One of the biggest mistakes made in these instances, is cutting the allocation of funds for the marketing department. We sat down with our Co-Founder, Bob Pinchin, to discuss his views on why marketing is so often misconceived as an expense, rather than an investment. 

It's because of this mindset, when things go wrong, many CEOs look at variable, rather than fixed expenses to cut, and Marketing is often the first to go. Businesses who understand effective marketing know that this decision will have minimal short term impact. This is because good marketing takes time.

Instead of ditching marketing in times of fiscal uncertainty, investing in marketing during a slower, more disruptive time is actually a much smarter long term strategy. Especially when your competition is likely trimming their budgets and trying to cut costs. 

“...a dim torch will produce no light in a sunny field, but perfectly sufficient light in a dark cave”, explains Bob.  His analogy encapsulates the importance of maintaining or amplifying marketing in times of trouble. When the market is in full swing and businesses are having a great deal of success, your torch will make less impact as there is already so much light pollution. However, in tough times when other businesses are cutting marketing (turning their lights off), keeping marketing efforts going can make much more of an impact. 

So why invest in marketing, particularly when your business is struggling? Knowing the right financial investments to make are risky at the best of times, particularly when tangible results may not be accessible for months. 

Marketing in a B2B setting, particularly in the tech sector, is a classic example of complex consumer decision-making and a prolonged buying cycle consisting of five main stages: 

  • The identification of a problem (the need for a product or service)

  • An investigation of what options are available

  • The evaluation of alternatives

  • Purchase decision, (by committee or otherwise)

  • Post-purchase evaluation

Therefore, the number of “touches” with your business that a customer requires to lead them to a conversion is so much greater than most B2C products. But it's not just about generating new business, it's also about getting incremental revenue and increasing engagement with existing clients. Keeping marketing consistent regardless of the state of the economy, will help keep you at the top of potential and existing customers’ minds, where every they are in the decision-making process. 

Investing in solid, well informed marketing strategies and expertise may seem expensive as an upfront cost, but if done right will ultimately prove invaluable. At Swaytech we work with CEOs and Founders to help them build a marketing mindset throughout their organisation, rather than a silo'd marketing function. Marketing expertise and skills required change overtime so being able to access the right knowledge, cross-functional experience and skill sets at the right time is key. It all starts with strategy – but strategy is nothing without execution. This is when the rubber hits the road:

If you’re feeling the pinch on resources and budgets don’t let that hold you back your marketing, you can still keep the lights on through options like fractional and virtual marketing services. You can tap into a world of senior marketing knowledge and expertise to help you navigate times of uncertainties, as and when you need it.  It’s a more cost-effective, low-stress course of action towards sustainable growth and success, especially during times of economic uncertainties. 

Learn more about Sway Tech’s Fractional Executive Services

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