Business Recession Tips — How to Sell During a Recession when You’d SWEAR No One is Buying

Business Recession Tips

Does it seem as if NO ONE is buying right now?

Is the problem THE RECESSION is it that you haven’t changed how you are selling as times got tougher. In fact, this market place has been changing even before the recession hit. Different kinds of marketing are necessary today as compared to just a few years ago.

And, another thing, as our market has tightened their belts, it may be a little harder to reach them, or to convince them.

Let’s take a look at the marketing formula. Marketing is nothing more than

  • Number of people who get to see our marketing (and who need us)
  • times
  • Conversion rate of our marketing (controlled by what we say andhow we say it)
  • equals
  • Number of leads, or sales appointments we get.

Let me tell you a story about Ken, a construction company owner who told me last year about this time that NO ONE is buying from him any more. His perception was that as the real estate market crashed, no one was building new construction, and that no one was building anything.

I used Google Keyword tool (which, by the way is a great tool to discover how many people are actually searching for you, and how they are searching) to show him that there were 13,000 people a month looking for all kinds of construction right here in Kansas City. And, I told him that 5% was sort of my rule of thumb of how many of those we should be capturing with our marketing. And, even if our marketing was working at a much lower rate then even 1% of 13,000 people is 130 people a month, way more than he could handle.

So, why wasn’t he getting any new clients? He was still marketing his old way to the same people he had always marketed to. And, they weren’t buying. But, there were 13,000 people still looking. He had also “turned his marketing down” for fear that he was spending too much on marketing, which compounded his problem.

When marketing is dependent upon not only the number of people who see you but the conversion rate of what you say and how you say it, when the marketplace tightens it’s belt that converson rate naturally drops, and when you reduce the number of people you get in front of

(fewer people seeing your marketing) X (lower conversion rate) = A MUCH LOWER number of customers.

He should have turned up his marketing, probably double, or more, and possibly changed his target market. It just so happens as people stopped buying new, and very expensive houses, they started spending more money to repair the homes they already had.

One of my other clients, a top end remodeler, during about this same time saw his remodeling business go through the roof. When we started working on his business, the national average for the average remodeling job was around $20K.

I challenged him to reach higher. We had discovered that he had some high end jobs that had made him lots bigger profits with a lot less work.  We also noticed that in certain areas of this city, in the high end neighborhoods it was a lot easier to sell. As times got tough, more and more of the low end homes would ask for a quote, hear a $20,000 bathroom remodeling bid and say “I’ll do it myself.”

However, in those high end neightborhoods, most of these people had the money to spend, AND they just plain wouldn’t do it themselves. In addition to that, they were looking at bigger jobs. One community here is tearing down million dollar homes to rebuild, and that’s during a recession.

In any case, by refocusing on 3 of the high end communities here, this remodeling client today won’t take a job under $100K, and his average job is about $600K.

He’s moved from $20K jobs where about 9 out of 10 would flinch when he gave them the quote and say they’d do it themselvesor not doit at all. To $100K+ quotes where 90% of them will buy and the job is over 5 times bigger.

And that’s at a time when many small businesses would SWEAR that No One is buying.

So, how do you do that with your business?

1) Find that IDEAL client,

  • the one that won’t balk and say “I’ll do it myself” or not do it at all,
  • who also has the money to spend,
  • AND is likely to spend a LOT more.

2) Instead of “turning yourmarketing down” turn it up. The more people who get to see your marketing the more that will buy. Of course, make absolutely sure that the cost to acquire a client is profitable. Then BUY new clients as fast as you can.

3) Use Google Keyword Tool to find how many people are looking for what you do, and how they are looking. Assume that you should be getting at least 5% of those as leads, and then manage your marketing to get that many. If your conversion rate is below 5% review what you say and how you say it.

If you want to raise your marketing conversion rate, to get more people jumping into your shopping cart, take a look at my ebook  “30 Seconds to Prospects CHASING You” that will help you tune up that marketing message to 5% or beyond.

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