Growing your business in uncertain times

At a time when economic uncertainty continues, brands face unique challenges in maintaining and growing their market share. To be successful, they must develop effective advertising and marketing strategies that are well-adapted to the current climate.

Messaging matters. 

One key strategy is to focus on core values that are relevant to consumers during periods of economic uncertainty. Brands that prioritize things like quality, trustworthiness, and reliability are more likely to resonate with consumers who are seeking stability and reassurance during these uncertain times.

Agility in adversity. 

In addition to communicating a strong brand message, brands must also be agile in their advertising and marketing efforts. This means being willing to experiment with new tactics such as social media advertising and influencer marketing, and being responsive to changes in consumer behavior.

Boldness and a consumer connection. 

Nike is a brand that has been successful with marketing during uncertain times. The company has a long-standing reputation for bold advertising campaigns, and during the current economic crisis, it reinforced this message by focusing on values such as resilience and perseverance. 

For example, in its advertising campaign at the end of 2020 (after the Japan Olympics had been postponed), Nike emphasized the importance of hard work and dedication, even in unfavorable conditions in its “You Can’t Stop Us” campaign. This resonated strongly with consumers who were looking for inspiration and motivation during these difficult times. As a result, Nike was able to maintain its market share and thrive in a challenging advertising climate.

Keeping investment to deliver success. 

As budgets get pressured, holding the line on advertising expenses and even continuing experimentation with new tactics may seem risky. But being bold with new and emerging channels can give you a chance to establish successful practices and gain new audiences to fuel growth.

Lessons from the past. 

During the 1930’s Procter & Gamble famously maintained their advertising spending and even created soap operas during the Great Depression. Doing so gave their key audience a brand connection and a much-needed chance to escape during the radio shows. This allowed them to continue capturing market share, even as other companies were struggling. This commitment to marketing spend is still in place today. As brand consultant Mark Ritson observed, P&G maintained marketing support for their, now iconic brands through the pandemic, and saw their revenue increase as a result, with one executive noting on an earnings call that “we really do expect to come out of the crisis stronger than we went into it.”

Relevance is always a winner. 

Ultimately, the key to success during times of economic uncertainty is having a clear understanding of your target market and tailoring your advertising and marketing strategies accordingly. With the right strategy in place, brands can not only survive but thrive during these challenging times.