Budgies eh? Aren’t they just like Budgets? Both at their best when they’re not caged – when they can exercise a little. If you don’t make them work, they’ll be a lazy, sluggish, no good to anyone. They both benefit from the introduction of a cuttlefish now and again…
OK, maybe not. But you try illustrating a budget; the results are nowhere near as attractive.
If you heard the Chancellor’s recent budgie, you’ll have heard him twittering on about looking to the creative industries to pull the economy back on it’s feet, for us to lead the way out of the mire. But, why pick on us? What makes us so different? Well, maybe it’s the way we look at things. It’s a new year for many of us, with new budgets, and there’s a new business landscape out there too. Things look very different from where they were 12 months ago, so a different outlook might well help.
For instance, many big brands increase their marketing budgets in a recession, but why, and how can you achieve the same results without increasing yours?
Well, a marketing budget goes further if there are less competitors battling for the same attention. So, when times are hard you can buy more ‘mind share’. They would feel that to cut marketing spend at this time places a now dwindling marketplace into the hands of their competitors, and when things recover this could put them in a position from which it’s difficult to come back from. But increasing budgets is obviously not an option for most of us.
What you’ve got to do is get creative in more ways than one. A truly creative campaign shouldn’t just have a creative hook or advertising idea. It should have a creative strategy and a creative use of budget, as separate issues. Make sure that all the marketing you’re doing is actually contributing to your new business. Seems obvious, but are you doing it? For many this means looking at more measureable, online vehicles, but that’s not the end of the story. In a future post here we’ll be looking at the right mix of integrated campaigns that really deliver results, and at new strategies that you may not have thought of.
In the meantime, don’t worry. The CBI predict that the economy is going to shrink less than it did in the 80’s and that we’re over the worst of it already. Business investment and spending will drop (9.3% in 2009, 3.4% in 2010 – CBI), but it’s going in the right direction. We’re a much more media savvy society than we were in the 80’s so when the media tells us there’s something to worry about, we worry sooner. But we deal with it sooner, we’re more cautious but we’re also safer sooner, and we’ll be out of it quicker because of it.
Also, like we said last month, the fittest will always survive.
Spend a budget creatively, market smarter, look at the strategy you are using with which to approach your consumer and think about whether it’s actually working. Look at yourself in a mirror more often; budgies love it.
Oh, and while you’re getting creative with your Budget, why not get your ears round this inspirational classic: http://mp3corsa.com/artist/download/Budgie/mp3/music
(Try Panzer Division Destroyed! Come back Def Leppard, all is forgiven)