Some say it’s coming, and some say it’s already here. As a small business owner, the looming possibility of a recession creates tension and raises anxiety about your business’s survival.
Here’s how to keep your small business afloat and thriving, even during a downturn.
First and foremost, do not cut your marketing budget.
You’ll find that in times of economic downturns, many businesses (as well as your competitors) will pull back their marketing efforts and decrease their ad spending. Thus making more room for you in the marketplace at a lower cost.
People are looking for low-cost or DIY solutions to their problems during this time, so be sure to cater to these needs.
Reminder: Money’s tight for everyone during a recession so don’t be that business pushing a hard sale. ♀️
For example, if you’re a local restaurant and you know that dining out for dinner is now a luxury expense to your customers, create a few at-home recipes your customers can try.
Email your subscribers (you’ve built an email list, right??) on a weekly basis with one recipe each week. At the bottom of the email, include a 15% off coupon for their next dining-in experience.
This will play into the reciprocity principle, where people feel obligated to pay back what they received from others.
You provided them with not only a meal they could eat at home but ALSO a discount for the next time they can come out to eat? Heck yes, I’ll come by your restaurant for a dinner.
Aside from coupons, a great tool to get your existing customers to come back for more is by providing them with a punch card or loyalty reward program.
For example, if someone orders a sandwich from your shop, they get a punch on their punch card. Once they reach 10 punches, they receive a free sandwich.
This is the same idea as the Starbucks Star Reward program. They incentivize you to keep coming back because there’s something free or discounted in the future
Even though it’s a few visits away – it will encourage your customers to come back to YOUR shop versus the competitors because they’ve already started their journey (to a free bite) with you.
For more Small Business Marketing Tips, check out this blog post. The post provides four tips to help you take your marketing to the next level as a small business owner.