Okay, now is the time to start planning your business strategy for next year, and this article is dedicated to helping you increase customer enquiries by exploiting free advertising opportunities in a time of an economic downturn.
So we all know it’s been a tough few years for UK businesses due to the economic downturn, and boffins predict little sign of recovery in 2012, and are even talking about a possible ‘global recession’. The situation continues to get worse around mainland Europe too, with the recent events in Greece and the knock-on impact to the Euro Zone – this will undoubtedly have a further economic impact here in the UK regardless of us having our own currency.
So is it all ‘doom and gloom’ for businesses then?
Well just like boom times create massive opportunities for businesses, so too does an economic downturn. Many business opportunities are out there waiting to be realised targeting a cash-strapped nation. However, people still believe in good customer service too, and are not willing to forego that element of the businesses they deal with.
So it all boils down to producing relevant products at the cheapest prices with a good level of customer support. If you can achieve that then your business stands a good chance of making it through these tough times. If you think about it, the majority of businesses you see fail are usually due to one of these three reasons and not the current economic situation – it’s just the situation that exposes weaknesses in a company’s strategy, products and operations, and of course more often than not the company blames the downturn and not their own management. I ask you this, would Woolworths have gone out of business if it produced products people really needed at competitive prices? Wilkinson aren’t too dissimilar to where Woolworths could have been and they turned a Gross Profit of £631m in 2011 (nearly £20m up on the previous year).
Free advertising – the golden nugget SME’s can exploit to stay ahead…
Firstly, free advertising shouldn’t be a replacement for traditional advertising budgets, it should be a complimentary and blended strategy, i.e. to continue developing and investing in ‘paid-for’ advertising, but also place as much effort into more creative and free ways of promoting a business.
Business directories are a great place to start a free advertising campaign. But with a word of caution, i.e. choose the best and most respected directories to advertise your business profile on, and remember to keep the details up-to-date.
Viral marketing is another great way to take advantage of free advertising. Why not get creative and produce a video of your products and services in a humorous style, and kick-start a viral video campaign on YouTube. Tip: some business directories also let you upload and store a free video on your profile page.
In conclusion, the Internet has created endless possibilities of free advertising opportunities, and something you and your management team should be putting firmly on the agenda for 2012.
James Stevens works for Wampit® as a freelance writer and blogger specialising in the media and advertising sector. You can add your company profile to the Wampit® business directory today to take advantage of free advertising on one of the UK’s premier advertising service.