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Why You MUST Keep Marketing When Times are Tough

Earlier this week I received an email newsletter from a fellow marketing professional that talked about why you shouldn’t do any marketing when times are tough. The first few lines talked about how our inboxes are filling up with messages from people trying to sell us what we don’t need, distracting us from the more urgent matters of making sure our businesses survive. I only managed to read the first few lines before I deleted the email. Perhaps if I’d carried on reading I might have learnt something about marketing during uncertain times, but the first few lines were enough to put me off!

You see, I completely disagree. When the world is going through a recession, or a pandemic, or just times of confusion and anxiety, if you want your business to survive, you simply have to keep doing the right sort of marketing. Let me give you a great example.

Going for Gold

Ian is a brilliant coach. I’ve written about him before in this blog – you can find him in the A-Z of Marketing Experts here. Ian has been one of my Mentoring clients for a few years now and when we spoke at the beginning of this week, I suggested that he contact his A grade clients – his best, most loyal clients, who he loves working with – to see how they are getting on. As with many coaches and trainers, all Ian’s face to face work has been postponed or cancelled, but that doesn’t mean that he should have to sit at home feeling sorry for himself, eating into his savings.

Making it personal, Ian called one of his top clients to ask how he was getting on. Staff working from home for the first time, with no team members to talk to; remote management of people who can’t be seen; issues with technology and productivity. These were just some of the challenges that Ian’s client has been facing in the last week or two. Ian’s ‘thing’ is Resilience (he’s an expert in it, having won a number of Paralympic medals) so he mentioned to his client that he was thinking about developing an online workshop in resilience for working from home. “What do you think?” Ian asked his client. “Is that something that businesses might be interested in?”

“That’s exactly what I need!” was the reply. Ian’s client had been looking online for something to help his team members but hadn’t found anything suitable. What Ian was planning would be perfect – especially if Ian could tailor it to his precise needs. “Could you send me an outline of the course in a few weeks?” he asked. “I can get it to by the end of this week,” was Ian’s proactive reply.

Money Talks

When it came to talking fees, Ian asked his client what he would be happy to pay. Between them they agreed a fee that suited them both. It’s less than Ian would normally charge for a half day workshop, but it saves him from having to handle 3-4 hours of travelling on public transport. It also gives him time to run second half day workshop on the same day, if he wants to. It opens the door for Ian to run a number of different online courses for this A grade client and it will quickly solve some of the problems that the client is currently facing.

So should you stop marketing when times are tough? Only if you want your business to fail! Instead, rather than resorting to mass marketing messages that are impersonal, take the personal approach. Pick up the phone and talk to your top clients. Listen to their issues and see how you can help them. Be proactive and your clients will continue to be loyal to you.

When times are tough, if you need someone to chat to, please call me on 07773 252 744. Or join me for Marketing Mondays – a free Zoom drop in session on the first Monday of each month, starting at 2pm on Monday 6 April 2020. Click here to register and then join the call, when you can ask any questions you have about marketing your coaching, consulting or training business, and network with like-minded business owners.

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