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Three Tactics To Beat The 2011 Economic Trend


OK. So the economy is on everyone’s mind right now. Like many businesses you prepared for the last half of 2011 with prudence – keeping inventories in check, hiring close to need, marketing tight. You thought you were ready. Now this.

Forecasting income and expenses for a business unit the other day I expressed the value looking to the past to determine where to go in the future. Building trends from past business combined with the knowledge of what’s new, different or better than before provides solid footing for the future.

So taking my own cue I’m going back quite a ways to build on the trend for the balance of 2011.

In June of 1775 at the Battle of Bunker Hill American Revolutionary Colonel William Prescott said to his troops, “Don’t fire (shoot) until you see the whites of their eyes.” Prescott said this because he had limited ammunition and didn’t want to waste it. He wanted his soldiers to only take shots that would almost definitely kill British soldiers. Sound advice. And it worked. Not without casualties on the American side including Prescott, but the highest casualties suffered by the British in the Revolutionary War to date.

Consumers are sitting on their wallets. To change that behavior bold action is required. Don’t fall into the same trap the President has of “tinkering around the edges” of the situation. Address it square on. The stock market drop yesterday, the worst one-day drop since December 2008, was caused by fear and uncertainty.

The best strategy to beat the 2011 economic trend is to:

  1. Wait Until The Dust Settles – from the debt ceiling, S & P rating and subsequent stock market reaction. Give it a week or so. Meanwhile work on #2
  2. Be Ready To Deliver The Positive – consumers want relief from bad news…give them a reason to be enthusiastic about your product or services. Fine tune messaging around emotional and familiar attributes. In times of uncertainty consumers want more of that
  3. Don’ Shoot Until You See The Whites Of Their Eyes – know exactly who your target audience is and how to connect with them…then pound away. Hit them hard with your message (See #2). Now is not the time for a shotgun approach
With this approach consumers will respond to your brands’ message and you’ll be a success in 2011.
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