Think Long-Term for the Short Term

The uncertain economy has everyone shaking a bit. It’s hard to predict what will happen but there’s one thing we know for certain: don’t. stop. advertising.

How should you be focusing your B2B marketing for the next 12-18 months?

Short-term, conversion-based campaigns don’t make a lot of sense for B2B organizations whose prospects are hitting their own financial obstacles. For those brands, investing in long-term relationships and brand-building is a better choice.

Of course, B2B brand awareness created now is likely to bring the greatest sales benefit during the recovery period, when the impact is the biggest. Brand advertising is not about profiting in a recession; it’s about capitalizing on recovery.

In normal times, the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising (IPA) data argues for a balance between brand and activation spend in the ratio of 60:40 for maximum effectiveness.

Most B2B companies already spend less than 50% on brand-building – far below the recommended 60% – so there is certainly no sense in cutting awareness-based advertising further unless survival depends on it.

It’s not all bad though: because so many advertisers will reduce budgets, category ad spend will decrease which means maintaining your share of voice is likely to be more affordable than in normal times.

So, what to do? History tells us to keep spending. Capitalize on reductions in costs and continue to build your brand until your clients are confident and ready to spend again.

(And as always, we’re here if you need help with your marketing strategy, media buying, or decision-making in general.)