Lessons from the recession: remaining agile in times of change

By Nicky Rudd
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Padua Communications is 12 years old this year. We have experienced a massive period of change since we set up – the 2010 recession, Brexit, and now the pandemic (and still Brexit!)

As we are used to going through periods of uncertainty and change, we thought it might be useful to share some nuggets of wisdom that have worked for us and for our clients over the last decade.

People react to change in very different ways. Some people relish it, while others just want to crawl up in a ball. Neither of these is inherently good or bad.

In times of uncertainty, if you can keep your wits about you and stay focused on the most important important things, it can make a massive difference to your productivity and your wellbeing. Here are my three lessons I learned during the last recession:

Make a plan

There is no need to make a long term plan – just one that will work for three to six months. Often in difficult times, companies cut their marketing spend. But if you have made a plan and you have thought strategically about how your marketing will work, it means you won’t react in a sporadic fashion when opportunities arise.

You will be much more cost effective by having a plan, sticking to your marketing strategy and creating assets that work with that.

Make your assets evergreen

When you are creating your assets or marketing materials, try and make them evergreen whenever possible. Don’t tie them to a particular date or event in the calendar unless you absolutely have to. Think about what is happening in the social, political and environmental landscape that will affect your business, and in turn, your customers.

If you try and think more widely than purely sales-focused material, you will have more opportunities to be creative, which will lead to pieces of content that are more shareable. It also means that you will be able to use these pieces in a wider range of campaigns, over and over, rather than doing a piece of content, and then it being immediately out of date.

Remain agile

One of the common things that we have seen with the businesses we have worked with (over 150 at the last count), is that the most successful businesses have been able to pivot and quickly adapt to the circumstances in which they find themselves.

You might be thinking: ‘I sell this product’, or ‘I have this service, and it’s fairly fixed.’ One of the ways to remain agile is to go and speak to a few of the customers that you have worked with. It needs only be three to five of them, but having an in-depth conversation about what you offer, what they are going through and how you can help is extremely helpful.

You may find you can offer a cut-down version of your products and services that will be more cost effective and be more attractive to potential customers. Everyone is reviewing how they spend their money, and brands that have looked at what their customers are going through and have adapted their services because they genuinely care will be the ones that succeed.

On that note, if there is anything that Padua Communications can help with – advice, content creation or some strategic ideas – please let us know by ringing us on 0203 282 7570 or emailing [email protected]. We would love to hear from you and help if we can.

Check out our new flexible marketing support solutions – the Dolce Vita range – and see if there is something there that suits your needs and help you ride out this period of change.

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