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Why You Should Continue Marketing in a Recession


The beginning signs of a recession can be intimidating for any small business owner, including visual artists like photographers and illustrators. However, going against the grain of conventional wisdom and increasing your marketing efforts in a recession can actually prove to be beneficial.

With fewer professionals marketing themselves in a downturn due to possible discouragement and therefore being risk-averse, continuing to market yourself as a visual artist in a recession can help you gain more traction with less competition.

Let’s explore this contrarian approach in further detail.

Why You Should Still Market Yourself in a Recession

It may be tempting to cut your marketing budget when the economy is riddled with unknowns. Nonetheless, we’re here to tell you that investing in marketing during a downturn, whether that’s in sweat equity or in actual dollars, can make a huge difference in how your business performs during, and especially after, the recession. Remember that the economy and your own prospects will always recover, no matter how long a recession lasts.

Not only can the use of tools such as Agency Access’ Creative Directory make marketing easier for you during this time, but there are so many reasons that investing in your marketing is essential now more than ever. Here are just a few.

Keep Your Market Share and Don’t Let Competitors Encroach

If you have any footing at all in your industry, it’s not the time to let that slide. Backing down on marketing or investing in your business can let your competitors creep in. You’ll want to ensure that your visual artist brand doesn’t fade from customers’ memories during a recession. Even more so, be sure that your competitors don’t take market share (or clients) from you.

Maintain Brand Awareness

Marketing in a recession is crucial to keeping your brand top of mind for your leads and clients. One easy and free way to do this is to offer a visually appealing break for your followers on social media through photos or video. This may not immediately convince your followers to buy from or book with you, but it will create a strong relationship with your brand during a tough time for everyone. When the inevitable happens, the recession ends, and customers are increasing their budgets again, you’ll be the first on their minds.

Solidify Trust With Your Current Clients

Continuing recession marketing allows you to build credibility with your current clients. As we mentioned before, everyone needs a little bit of light during a tough downturn. Your clients may be looking to you for signs of relief. Solidify that trust and confidence in your brand by persevering. As a result, they’ll likely stick by your side, seeing you as a recession-proof visual artist.

Powerful, Actionable Tips for Marketing in a Recession

Looking for some tips to market in a recession without overspending your own budget? Here’s what we recommend you should do to successfully market your business during a downturn in the economy.

Reevaluate Your Offerings

Consumer buying behaviors typically change and adjust during a recession, so do what you can to meet them at their point of need. Pare down your service offerings and simplify things to provide more essential services for them.

Concentrate on streamlining your services to make the most efficient use of your time, but still, bring in top dollar. For example, if you offer portrait photography for editorial, corporate, and advertising clients, you may want to switch to offering only portrait photography for corporate clients.

Conversely, if you see that consumer needs are adjusting towards a different need that you don’t yet offer, try launching an entirely new service. You’ll likely have fewer visual artists launching new services themselves, so this can give you a leg up on the competition.

Keep Engaging With Current Clients

Maintain the relationship that’s already there with your current clients and don’t let them forget about you. Regularly send email newsletters to keep them updated on your brand and service offerings.

Engage with your current clients and potential leads through social media. Not sure where to begin when it comes to finding the right audience to start conversations with on social media? The Agency Access Creative Directory provides social media accounts for companies as well as individual contacts that you can connect with.

Most importantly, evaluate what channels work best for your brand, and focus your time on the ones with the best return on investment.

Be Positive With Emotional Messaging Engagement

A recession can be an intense and emotional time for so many. Adjust your recession marketing and advertising to factor in the mood of your leads and clients. Your audience will want to feel like they’re not alone, whether that means speaking to the lower moods or by being the inspiration they need. Projecting confidence and a can-do positivity will create a whole new feeling from your brand that your audience may have not experienced before or is not currently experiencing from other brands.

Laser-Focus Your Client Targeting

Because it’s likely that your budget is also a bit tighter during a recession, be sure to research your target audience thoroughly and make the most of whom you’re reaching out to. Now more than ever, it’s important to get the right message to the right audience. Remember, while you may not see an immediate increase in purchases or bookings, establishing a strong relationship with potential leads will only help you bounce back faster once the recession is over.

Last tip for marketing in a recession? Have a list curated and ready for you for your lead targeting. With over 90,000 contacts, the Agency Access database puts you in contact with professionals and clients that you can engage with no matter the state of the economy. Stay up to date with Agency Access’ email newsletter to learn more ways to market your visual art business with our resources.

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