There was a sobering article in Marketing Week last week.
As marketers, we all know the long-term impact of reducing or cutting marketing spend.
And we all advocate continued investment in brand building during difficult times.
Of course we do.
We’re inherently biased.
The article, titled “Businesses need to ensure they can survive today before they look long-term” makes the following point – and it’s one us marketing peeps would do well to remember:
“Companies that invest in brand-building advertising during times of economic crisis come out of them in better shape than those that don’t.
And the vast majority of marketers who attempt to tell that to their CFOs ARE LIKELY TO BE PUNCHED IN THE FACE before finding themselves looking for a new job.”
The problem we have in that marketing community is that whilst we know that marketing should be viewed as an investment, not a cost – the reality is that investments rarely produce guaranteed returns.
When jobs and livelihoods are at stake, it’s a pretty tough ask to persuade businesses to invest in a future that may not exist unless they cut everything.
There’s a strong argument for continuing to invest in marketing while competitors are pulling back, but we always need to remember that many businesses aren’t in a strong enough financial position to do so.
Survival will always be the short-term priority. The long-term economic outlook depends on it.
So invest if you can – but if you can’t, I’d urge you to make a plan. Because when this thing ends, it’s not going to be plain sailing.