How to Stay Rooted During an Economic Downturn

March 20, 2023

5 minute read

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The Google Algorithm is Economics Agnostic (And Other Reasons Why Investing In a  Solid Digital Marketing Program is Smart During Times Like These)

With economic prospects looking less than stellar in the coming months, how should your business react? And how will a slowing economy affect the behavior your competition? According to the Harvard Business Review, companies traditionally tend to face such times with cost cutting, price reductions, and the postponement of new investments.

Businesses also often cut their marketing budgets. But is that a good idea?

All the indicators say no.

In fact, maintaining a consistent, even robust, marketing strategy while your competition goes into retreat is definitely the right move during times like these.

Here’s why.

Google analytics dashboard

The Google Algorithm is Economics Agnostic

It doesn’t care about the state of the economy. It just keeps on looking for fresh, relevant content. And, regardless of financial conditions, your audience still has needs and interests. While other companies pull back, you can take advantage of the less competitive environment by maintaining—or even increasing—content production to stoke the interest of new potential customers in the short term and set yourself up for an expanded customer base in the long run. Also, consider this. Continuing to take the proper steps to ensure your SEO is strong will keep you on the path to maximizing those critical, zero-cost organic clicks.

Woman on couch scrolling through her phone

Your Audience is on Social

As economic conditions evolve as expected in the coming months, you can assume your audience will spend more time at home, online, and on social. This is the perfect opportunity for you to both solidify your organic social strategy and engage with added value content through paid media. You can establish yourself as an authority in your niche with exclusive content versus what’s already on your website and give users a reason to follow and engage. As other companies react to current economic conditions and pull media dollars, you can take advantage of dropping CPMs and CPCs due to less competition in the market and reach your target through paid social at a lower cost.

Two employees creating whiteboard wireframes

Good UX Boosts Conversion Regardless of Economics

Your website is the single most powerful marketing tool in your digital belt. All channelssocial, content marketing, email marketing, display, even traditional marketing for that matter if effective, ultimately lead there. That’s why properly investing in your website’s user experience (UX) is smart money regardless of economic conditions. According to Forrester, 88% of people are less inclined to return to a site after a negative user experience. On the other hand, research shows that for every $1 invested in UX, $100 is returned, for an ROI of a whopping 9900%. Better UX boosts brand equity, customer satisfaction, loyalty, and up to a 200% increase in conversion rate. Ensuring good UX is smart money in hard times.

Two hands reviewing a paper filled with equity graphs

Investing in Brand Preserves Equity in Good Times and Bad

You’ve worked hard to establish your brand’s equity. Maintaining a continuing presence in the mind space of your consumer provides what experts refer to as a psychological “anchor of stability” in times of insecurity. And preserving the foundation you’ve established not only helps maintain the market share you currently have, but also helps set the stage for growth during the period of economic recovery. Research shows that if you cut too deeply into advertising and communications budgets during down periods, the price to regain mind share in the marketplace once the economy recovers actually costs more than what was saved.

Here’s a point that bears repeating. During an economic downturn, demand for ad inventory can fall. Fewer companies may be bidding on keywords. All of this can mean better prices and better inventory availability for smart businesses like you. You can take advantage of a buyer’s market and reach your audience–that will always have needs regardless of economic conditions–at a reduced cost.

Staying the course, maintaining your brand, meeting your consumers where they are, and giving them the best user experience possible are all principles that will allow you to not only survive in tough economic times, but thrive—now, and when recovery is in full swing.

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