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Recession 2008 - 5 Things to do Right Now
Okay, the debate is over. No doubt, we are currently in a recession, and labor experts are forecasting everything from mild to very severe job losses. But the funny thing is that with the exception of firms in the construction industry, most staffing firms are still too busy filling orders to even begin thinking about a downturn.
So what can, and should, you do right now?
- Help your clients plan ahead.
Remember, a downturn may affect your clients as much or more than it does you. Schedule meetings with your clients to discuss the impact the downturn is likely to have. Brainstorm ideas for converting more of their fixed labor expenses to variable to minimize their risk.
A downturn can also be an ideal time for companies to top grade staff, so you may want to partner with some of your more forward-thinking clients to craft a proactive strategy to source top talent in advance of the coming recovery.
- Get a jump on the competition.
As job losses begin to mount, the practical reality is that there will be fewer orders for staffing services. In other words, you will need to get more of the business that's out there!
When companies in your area have staffing needs, make sure you're the company that stays top-of-mind by communicating regularly with every client and prospect. Use e-mail, direct mail, voice mail, and personal visits to connect with people. Target all levels of decision makers from the order placers to the end users to the strategic and economic buyers.
- Demonstrate the ROI of your services.
Staffing is a great tool to cut costs, but not everyone understands this fact. If you don't have case studies or financial illustrations that show the economic impact of temporary staffing and direct hire services, get them. (And if you don't know where to get them, call Haley Marketing.)
With proof in hand, you can target owners, operations managers, CFOs, controllers, and other executives to promote the message that your services can help to cut costs...and in the process, you will create new opportunities to sell staffing.
- Educate your clients.
Whether it's face-to-face meetings, seminars, or webinars, education is a terrific tool to expand the market for staffing. By teaching people about concepts like planned staffing, master supplier agreements, VOP programs, RPO, and even more basic concepts such as replacing overtime with temporary labor, you can show prospects and clients new ways your services can be of value…in all market conditions.
- Don't wait to get started.
Here's the catch-22 of a recession. You may have less business, and less revenue, yet your success depends on investing more time and resources into marketing. Companies that buckle down and cut spending on marketing may survive, but they will be the last to recover.
A study by the Center for Research and Development found that aggressive advertisers obtained 4.5 times the market share gain of competitors who didn't jack up spending during a recession. During the 2001 recession, Dell and Wal-Mart used the downturn as an opportunity to knock out weaker competitors. In the staffing industry, I personally know of several companies that made very aggressive investments in marketing between 2001 and 2003. These same companies became some of the fastest growing in the industry between 2003 and 2008.
Marketing more aggressively not only helps you boost awareness and stay top-of-mind, it signals to the market that your business is doing well. And people want to work with companies that are successful. When your competitors pull in their spending, they send the message that they're in trouble. Don't fall victim to this trap.
Next week learn about planning for the next 12-18 months while business remains fairly strong right now.
Remember, Haley Marketing can help! Whether you need assistance with direct marketing to get the door open or nurture marketing to keep it open, call on us. We have two new, and very cost effective solutions that can help your business to stand-out, stay top-of-mind, and increase sales.
Just give us a call if you'd like to know more: 1-888-696-2900.