This is Not the Time to Cut Back on PR

Last Updated Sep 18, 2008 12:34 PM EDT

An already shaky economy seemed to be getting worse this week with the Crisis on Wall Street. While the financial turmoil may not hit companies and consumers immediately, it's more likely than not that the ripple effects of this crisis will be felt far and wide.

When that happens, bosses will start looking for ways to cut the budget. And that often starts with cutting back on marketing in general and PR in particular.

My friend and colleague Jeannette Bitz at Engage PR thinks that's exactly the wrong thing to do.

"A down economy can actually be a good opportunity to invest time and money in PR â€" not cut it," she says.

Here's why:

  • Chances are your competitors hunker down and spend less during down times. But reporters still need good stories and content. Now is the time when smaller or mid-sized companies that usually have to work hard to vie for news coverage have a chance to drive or influence trends.
  • Your customers need to know who you are and that you are maintaining a viable business even during bad economic times.
  • Companies that invest in their brands during a recession, when competitors are cutting back, can improve market share and ROI at a lower cost than during good economic times.
To read Bitz's suggestions for what companies should do in a downturn to make the most of their PR spend, read her recent blog post about it.
  • Jon Greer

    Jon Greer has been analyzing media and PR for more than 25 years. He's been a journalist and a PR executive, and has been a featured speaker for many years at the Bulldog Reporter Media Relations Summit, and served as Bulldog's Editorial Director for their PR University series of weekly how-to audio conferences.

    Jon provides PR services including media relations and freelance writing to clients including start-ups, law firms, corporations, investment banks and venture capital firms. In addition, Jon provides spokesperson training. Learn more about Jon's training programs at The Media Bridge.