Volume 11 No. 1: Reframing marketing as an investment
Everyone has that one friend.
The person you want to keep around when times get tough. Who always manages to make things better.
For many businesses, that friend is marketing. They just may not know it.
Reframing marketing as an investment
Each week, we break down another marketing trend so you can skip having a breakdown.
Marketing is an essential department when the road gets bumpy.
During the COVID pandemic, many brands cut their marketing efforts. But those that maintained or grew their spend performed better in the years following. The same pattern happened after the 2008 subprime mortgage crisis. During nearly a dozen recessions since the 1940s. Marketing has repeatedly mitigated companies' pain during an economic downturn and sped the recovery process after.
As businesses today cut costs due to ongoing economic uncertainty, it's left to marketers to educate business leaders on the benefits marketing provides.
Because marketing, done right, isn’t just another expense. It’s an investment in the business’s future. Of course, communicating this requires marketers to step into strategic decision-making roles. Here’s a few tips that may help:
Build arguments based on data. Look for external case studies and research to support your position.
Be prepared to pivot. Consumer behavior can change rapidly during uncertain times. Stay closely attuned to your customer to make sure your efforts are relevant and impactful.
Communicate the long-term vision. Ensure leadership understands the full impact of marketing efforts may not be felt until months (or even years) later.
Key Takeaway: By reframing marketing as an investment, rather than an expense, marketers can gain support for their initiatives and play a pivotal role in steering their business to long-term success.
The Growth Lab
Question: How do you decide when to shift strategies vs when to stay the course?
We ask an experienced group of business leaders, marketers and statisticians about strategies for success.
Answer: "There are plenty of methodical frameworks, but I try to keep my approach simple:
- Be as objective as possible.
- Evaluate your results vs initial expectations. Is the goal within reach, within a reasonable period?
- Assess the alternatives.
- Seek a second opinion if needed."
—Devan Futterer, VP Client Growth
Devan can usually be found working with a team to leverage creative problem solving to drive client results. But in his free time, he’s likely on the ice, practicing for his curling team’s next bonspiel.
Read: Great Leads
Great Leads: The Six Easiest Ways to Start Any Sales Message is the brainchild of a marketer and a copywriter. Together, Michael Masterson and John Forde explain how marketers can make the most of the six types of leads: The Offer, Promise, Problem-Solution, Big Secret, Proclamation and Story. It’s an underdiscussed but drastically essential skill—80% of an ad’s success is driven by the combination of the headline and the lead.
Our favorite insight? You can’t write your lead until first identifying and understanding your target customer. Because your job, as a writer and as a marketer, is winning over the heart of your prospect.
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