Marketing in tough times: The 80-20 rule

During an economic slow down, most companies would instinctively pull back and reduce spending in efforts to protect the bottom line. Many believe that throwing money into marketing is worthless if customers aren’t buying.

Charlie Fewell, experienced consultant and coach, has a different idea for how businesses should handle marketing in tough times. As he said on BusinessWeek, while you have no control on the state of the economy, you do have control over how you respond to it:

“I am convinced that in tough times, your outreach program to your top existing customers needs to kick into high gear. It is said in business that 20% of our customer list provides 80% of our sales revenue. You need to strengthen the value of the existing relationships within that 20%.”

Applying the Pareto principle, or the 80-20 rule, to your marketing during tough times will help you focus on the customers in your list who make the biggest impact on your bottom line.

People are taking more time to make purchasing decisions and drastically cutting back on spending, making it more important than ever for you to be the first that comes to mind when the customer is ready to buy.

Spend your marketing dollars reaching out to that top 20% of your customer list. Halting marketing across the board will only lead your customers to believe you went out of business, crossing you off the list of potential places to go when they’re in need.


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