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gain a competitive advantage during an economic downturn

How marketing in an economic down turn gives you a competitive edge

The economy is going through some tough times right now, but that shouldn’t surprise anyone, after all the economy works on a cycle. Every 5 – 7 years we experience a downturn, and it lasts less than a year. Strategically speaking this isn’t as scary for your business as it seems. In fact, marketing in an economic downturn can be just as fruitful if not more than at any other time! Just follow these tips for how to market your business during a down economy:

How to market your business during economic downturn


The key to marketing success in an economic downturn is to be more targeted, more relevant, and more efficient.

  • Be more targeted

A recession doesn’t mean you have to abandon all marketing activities. In fact, it gives you the opportunity to refocus your efforts on those that matter most—your customers’ needs and wants. The challenge is knowing how to identify these needs and develop campaigns that address them appropriately.

  • Focus on consumer relevance

The best way for a business owner can stay relevant is by being creative with their marketing strategies. The best way to do this is to stay consistent, focus on the customer’s needs and wants, and present enticing offers. The more relevant of an option you are the more business you will get. As most of your competition fades away because they chose to axe their marketing efforts for the time being, your consistent, steady approach, naturally makes you the clear choice.

What businesses do when the economy is down


Businesses typically cut back on marketing. When the economy is down, businesses in almost every industry will put a hold on their marketing efforts and focus instead on improving the product or service they offer. Since the economy will rebound in months, not years, this is counterproductive. In just a few months their previous marketing efforts have been lost and they must start the process of getting out there from the beginning. Momentum is an important thing for businesses, once you lose momentum, it is often a harder and more arduous task to get it back. Think of it as pushing a car uphill, letting it coast back to the bottom and then start pushing all over again. Sounds awful right?

Businesses focus on their core products or services. To become more competitive, businesses will often narrow down their product lines to only include those items that are most profitable for them and that they can produce at high quality every time. This is a great idea, focusing on the things you are best at and produce the high-quality results for is something you should do at all times not just in times of need.

Look for new ways to save money when running a business during an economic downturn: Look for cheaper alternatives if you haven’t already done so; try negotiating with vendors; consider outsourcing work instead of full-time employees , which save a lot of money. Cut out unnecessary expenses such as travel, software costs, fees for things that don’t provide much value, or provide revenue growth. After all is said and done, it doesn’t make sense to cut out things that drive revenue growth, focus on actual expenses that have little to no ROI.

How to win in an economic downturn


In today’s competitive world, you need to do more than just sell. You must build relationships. You must be relevant and make your customers feel appreciated. How? By marketing during an economic downturn, of course!

You may have heard that times are tough for businesses right now—they are. But that doesn’t mean you can’t come out ahead by using the power of marketing in an economic downturn:

It’s a long game: “Marketing” is about building relationships with your customers over time so that when they need something from your industry, they will choose YOU over anyone else who offers them similar products or services. In other words, good marketing isn’t just about selling; it’s also about building trust and loyalty so that when something happens and people need help, they turn first towards YOU before trying someone else out there who might not be as trustworthy or reliable as YOU are! This means doing things like sending special offers or discounts only once every six months instead of every month.

Staying relevant in a down economy can make a huge difference in how many more customers you will attract to your business.

  • Don’t be afraid to tap into your customers’ new priorities.
  • Don’t be afraid to look at everything through the customer’s lens.
  • Don’t be afraid to meet your customers where they are.
  • Don’t be afraid to keep in mind that your customers’ marketing messages have changed too.

Motivate your customers


In a down economy, your customers are more likely to be motivated by discounts and promotions than they might have been in the past. So, it’s crucial that you find ways to provide incentives for your customers without compromising your business model or profits.

One way to do this is by offering loyalty rewards programs that reward repeat buyers with discounts and special offers. This will help drive repeat sales from existing customers and may also lead some of them to refer their friends or family members who could use your products or services.

With that in mind you could offer a referral program, offering a discount or a cash reward for each new customer they refer to your business. Referral programs work very well as the new customer comes to you with built in trust, don’t disappoint create another loyal customer and before you know it you will have a ton of new customers.

You could also give out coupons as part of an overall marketing campaign, which can help generate interest throughout the year while also boosting sales now that there’s less competition from other businesses vying for attention from consumers who aren’t already familiar with what sets yours apart from theirs

Meet your customers where they are


As you continue to meet your customers’ needs, you will start to notice that they are more likely to buy from you if they feel like you understand their problems. They are more likely to buy from you if they feel like you understand their goals and objectives. In fact, in these difficult economic times, the best way for businesses to turn around is by meeting and exceeding customers’ expectations at every step along the way.

This means communicating with them on multiple levels: verbally (what we say) and non-verbally (what we do). You need to learn how communication works between people so that when it comes down to business decisions about what kind of marketing material or advertising template should be used for each campaign then there’s no room for error here because every detail counts when trying not only sell products but also build relationships with new clients who haven’t yet become loyal to your business.

Target new markets


When times are tough, you must be creative. And one of the best ways to be creative is by looking at things from new angles.

What if your products and services aren’t just for existing customers? What if they can reach an entirely new audience? What if everything you know about marketing and selling is wrong?

Marketing in a downturn means seeing opportunities where others see problems. It means being willing to take risks, even when everyone else is running away from them. It also means taking advantage of some unexpected opportunities that are right under your nose—maybe they’re already there waiting for you!

Market your business with consistency


Marketing is a long-term strategy. It’s not about making a quick sale, but rather building trust with your customers and relationships that will last. Therefore marketing in an economic downturn gives you a competitive edge: it makes sense for people to buy from businesses they know, like and trust.

When I was young, my father would always say “Just because they’re cheaper doesn’t mean you should buy them.” That advice still holds true today. If someone has been courteous enough to take the time and effort to show up at your door or inbox with something they think will be beneficial for you and your business, why not take advantage of it?

So instead of focusing on getting lots of new customers, focus on keeping the ones you already have happy by offering discounts — even if those discounts are only temporary offers meant to bring in more sales later down the road when things pick up again!

Differentiate your product or service


When the economy is booming, it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of new opportunities. But if you want to stay ahead of your competitors and gain an edge in a down economy, focus on the following:

  • Differentiating your product or service
  • Knowing what your competitors are doing
  • Having a unique selling point that sets you apart from other businesses
  • Demonstrating how valuable your product or service is to customers and clients (in financial terms)

If you market with the right strategy, you can be more successful than ever.


Marketing is key to success in any business, but it’s even more important in an economic downturn. Marketing strategies that work when your business is booming can backfire and hurt you if they’re not adapted to the new economic climate.

On the other hand, there are some marketing strategies that were much less effective before the recession and that have become much more effective now.

For example, social media platforms like Facebook have grown exponentially over the last few years; as a result, many small businesses have found them invaluable for boosting brand awareness, connecting with customers and generating referrals from people who already love their product or service.

Nowadays it’s easier than ever for companies to start a Facebook page for free—and because most social networks are free too. But keep in mind there is no such thing as a free lunch, social media only stays relevant from ad revenue, they do have algorithms in place to limit your exposure to your audience and others as a way to increase ad revenue. So, imagine how that will amp up when they have less ad revenue.

There are plenty of ways to efficiently and effectively market your business, now is the time to let go of any preconceived notions you may have and take full advantage of those options, while there is less competition in the market. This will set you apart from the competition in a few months when they start marketing again, because you were consistent and have gained clear top of mind awareness and trust. After all those who only market only in times of certainty can lead consumers to mistrust the brand or think they are not doing well. I have said it before Consistent relevant and adaptable businesses win the race, every time.

Marketing in an economic downturn can be difficult, but it’s also a great time to build your business. You have the chance to stand out from the crowd and attract customers who are looking for value and quality. If you keep these tips in mind and apply them consistently, we believe that your company will see success no matter what other businesses do. After all what goes down must go up and there is always a boom after a bust, it is best to be the most relevant when the boom takes over.  

We get it, all of this can feel a little overwhelming. If you are considering outsourcing your efforts or could just use a little help, reach out. We help businesses win the marketing game everyday and would love to the same for you. Crunch Fource ~ Marketing & Design for Every Budget!

If you would like to keep slugging through on your own, check out our Content Hub! You will find tons of valuable resources to help you up your marketing game!


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