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Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Growing brand energy in the downturn

To flourish in this downturn, challenge convention.  "Recessions provide fertile ground for launching new businesses, developing disruptive new products and strengthening customer loyalty." These are the words of marketing expert Andrew Razeghi from Northwestern University. Here are a few tips he offers based on the many examples of successful companies that prospered during recessionary times:
• While managing cash is important, don't put the brakes on. Continue to invest in R&D and marketing. "Listen to the market, invest in products for the long term, and keep in front of the customer."
• In a recession, the worst thing you can do is to go dark. In a recession "fear creates focus." "Customers wonder how you're doing. Now is the time to increase communication and restore confidence not only in the products you're selling, but also in the company behind those products."
• Marketers need to play to their strengths, and rethink how to turn those strengths into new opportunities. As marketers continue to clamor for attention, sensory branding will grow increasingly relevant to help cut through the clutter.
As he points out, many high-profile name brands were born in the midst of the Great Depression. 

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