Recession marketing was a term that I had heard several times before and never gave much thought about what it meant to both businesses and consumers. It wasn’t until this latest downturn in the economy that I began to notice that recession marketing was becoming a force and businesses were seeing this as an opportunity to strategically market unique aspects of their business.
Considering the US Economy shed 524,000 jobs in December, pushing the U.S. jobless rate to 7.2 per cent, the highest point since 1993, recession marketing has the potential to strategically place businesses in a position to capitalize on a growing demographic. As more and more people tighten their belts and seek bargains and watch aspects of their spending, businesses must distinguish themselves as recession friendly.
Kellog for example, is advertising its cereal as costing less than $0.50 a bowl.
Businesses have become more in-tune with consumer markets and have started focusing marketing efforts not just upon bargains, but economic value. Being perceived to be “recession friendly” moves beyond traditional marketing strategies of offering sales during tough economic times, to one that highlights an understanding of the tough economic times and gives consumers the value they seek.
Does recession marketing work?
It is obvious that some companies are having much more success with recession marketing strategies than others. Brands are struggling with how to be identified as offering value without sacrificing their bottom line. More and more marketing campaigns are incorporating “budget friendly” ideas, combining discounts with programs to encourage brand loyalty.
Similar campaigns have surfaced in the past to take advantage of a growing demographic concerned with the environment, while others concentrated on the health-concious individuals. It is difficult to avoid advertising and marketing campaigns clearly strategically focused on distinguishing companies within these two niches. Recession marketing is no different.
As the economy continues to worsen, look for marketers to exploit this, and demostrate how companies are understanding to what is taking place in the economy. Recession marketing is here to stay for some time.