Cutting advertising dollars is usually the first thing small businesses do when in an economic crisis or recession. Many do not realize what a terrible mistake that can be. Continuing to keep the brand awareness and unique goods or services you offer out in the public eye is the wisest thing you can do to guard your bottom line.

Historically, during the recession period of 1980-1985, the businesses that continued to advertise, refusing to cut advertising dollars, hit a 256-percent growth by the end of the recession as compared to their competitors who reduced advertising and marketing or eliminated it altogether.

These results are not due to luck either. They prove there’s a reward for companies who are aggressive with their advertising efforts in a recession. Here are even more reasons why you need to advertise your business in a bad economy:

1. Most of your competitors ARE pulling or limiting their advertising dollars.

Smart business owners know that playing it safe with their ad dollars won’t get them the win in the end. Owners who are shrewd and resist the temptation to “save a buck” holding back on advertising will step into a more positive future as the recession eases up because they have stayed top of mind and consistent in the market. This consistency will lend to the consumer having trust and confidence that THIS business is one they can trust and use in any economy! By advertising when all other stores are pinching pennies, you can scoop up a ton of new business.

2. You Can Tailor Your Message and Create Value in the Storm

As a business willing to continue to brand yourself and your product or service, now is the time to really be strategic with your value statement and message. While others are playing it safe, and losing top-of-mind awareness, you can stand in the limelight and really be seen and heard in a very profound way. A good economy equals a glutted marketing space. Take advantage of the quieting of the cacophony to really be noticed in a new and impactful way.

3. Target The More Affluent

Consumers may not be spending as much but they are still spending, especially those who are more affluent. The general public will most likely pull their purse strings tightly when the economy is down, so staying in front of those people who will continue to spend money becomes crucial in keeping your business afloat and earning a profit. Be clear on who you are targeting the best way to get your message to them. There are so many options for marketing your message, but is the demographic you are trying to reach really hanging out on a social media feed or should you consider investing in other marketing opportunities? Be crystal clear who you want to reach, where they consume information, and spend money to be one of the businesses they see consistently as a resource for their needs.

4. Marketing & Advertising Deals Increase

In a down economy, ad inventory still has to be sold. TV stations, radio stations, websites, outdoor vendors, and magazines still have budgets to make. They are just as eager to help you get your message out there as any other local business in your market. They are most likely offering packages and discounts not usually considered in a thriving economy when advertising dollars and flowing freely from all. Find those deals and utilize them to your advantage.

5. You Can Create Campaigns Around the Economy

Don’t be afraid to address the bad economy in your advertising. Customers are looking for good deals. Think of ways that you can create solutions to their pain points and then create a compelling deal to get that relationship started. You can build on that for years to come.

If you are thinking about cutting advertising dollars, remember this; in a bad economy, there are many opportunities to expose your business to new customers that aren’t always possible in a good economy. Every one of them can be explored to help you solidify your place in business and stand out from your competitors. Don’t make the mistake so many business owners do to stop advertising or limit the investment you make. It could be the difference between survival and succumbing to a slow and painful company death.