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Expert reveals low-cost strategies to grow a small business during a recession

After a tumultuous past two years for small businesses, even the smallest increase in supplier or software cost or change in strategy can impact a company’s profitability; every penny counts. Small businesses will face more economic certainty with reduced access to backup savings when compared to large firms.

Online searches for ‘how to make money in a recession’ have grown by more than 5000% in the past year.¹ With this in mind, digital marketing and website development specialist Fishtank Agency highlight how you can maximise a limited marketing budget to increase cash flow during a recession.

What are the key challenges facing a business during a recession?

During a recession, consumers will become much more financially conscious and reduce spending where possible. This, in turn, will impact how businesses will need to market their products and services to grow revenue during uncertain times.

With fewer opportunities for sales, businesses may need to make tough decisions and cut costs in certain areas. For example, costly printed direct mail campaigns and advertising fees may be an area businesses must compromise on if they are having cashflow issues.

What opportunities might a recession bring?

While it cannot be denied that a recession can bring hardship to many businesses, it can also bring opportunities for businesses to get creative with new ways of working.

For example, social media is a free form of advertising for businesses which is highly time-efficient and can be completed in-house. This can bring the opportunity to create an engaged audience of followers, away from expensive media advertisements, which often have a low ROI (Return On Investment).

Having a limited budget for advertising brings the opportunity to focus on industry trends using free social listening tools like Google Trends and Answer The Public.

What are the key strategies for growing a business during a recession?

Creating a budget-friendly digital marketing strategy is a crucial strategy to help maintain growth during a recession, even if a business has to cut back on spending.

Organic social media content packed with clickable links is a cost-effective alternative to increasing website traffic and goal conversions, allowing you to save on extensive pay-per-click (PPC) budgets.

Another great strategy is to build a bank of case studies and share this insight across social media (tagging relevant stakeholders), to reduce the cost of marketing efforts. Case studies are a free and organic way to build trust and brand awareness with your audience, showing them precisely what you can offer while also showing appreciation to existing customers.

Businesses can also use organic SEO to increase digital reach and rank higher in organic search results like Google. This helps you to stand out amongst your competitors, allowing more customers to find you online and hopefully increase your sales.

What other factors do businesses need to consider during a recession?

It is crucial to develop a robust digital marketing strategy 12 months in advance as this helps to avoid future financial uncertainties and allows time to coordinate tasks and distribute responsibilities.

Businesses should also bear in mind that using a range of low-cost digital marketing tools, such as social media, website and blog content, and email marketing, will help to maximise the impact of your overall campaign.

For further insight into digital marketing, please visit Fishtanks’s website.

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