‘When I was deep in poverty you taught me how to give.’ -Bob Dylan, The Wedding Song

August 13, 2009

By Michael Mark, creative director/ceo @nyca

 

You may need to reduce staff – the P&L Statement will have its say. You may need to cutbob-dylan services – it goes hand and hand with lost revenue. You may need to cut salaries – that hurts but maybe it’s better than losing a job. But with all the cuttings you cannot lower your standards. In fact, you must raise them. 

With less money and fewer people and less time, you must actually give more.  If you don’t, things will just get worse. You will have fewer clients because you will not be as valuable. More, you will have less self-respect because you haven’t been doing everything you can.  Don’t let the recession take away your self esteem. 

Cut your scope, cut your deliverables but in everything you do deliver, give more. Do it with even greater care than when the budgets were there. Yes, you might need to do less but do it better. You will have lots of excuses not to. The economy will weaken your resolve — that’s where it gets nastiest. But don’t give in, give more. You will keep your clients. When your competition succumbs you will get their business. Offer a fourth idea when you usually share three. Make the extra client call. Look over the work for another time to see how to make it better. Spend more time with your staff, listening more is giving more.  What ever you do quality is non-negotiable.

During cuts you need higher standards to keep your head and company morale raised. How else are you going to get a glimpse of the future?


THE RECESSION: DON’T GO IT ALONE

July 17, 2009

By Michelle Edelman, president @NYCA

We recently conducted a survey among top US marketers. We wanted to know how they were faring as the Great Recession drags on.

recession

We’ve witness declining media spends and our sample of $100+ million companies was no exception. 58% had reduced media expenditures and 79% had slashed their production budgets too. 19% of our sample reported significant change in their marketing strategies as a result of the economy. 69% of these top marketers were experimenting with new ways to get their messages out and sway consumers.

In short, it’s tough out there – getting tougher – and there’s a need for change in the air.

You would think agency partnerships would be more mission-critical than ever. Agencies can help their clients change paths quickly, and deliver alternate media solutions. As third party experts, we live and breathe this stuff all day every day, across industries and see different successes across different companies. 

But only 1/3 of companies reported that they viewed their agencies as collaborators in this dollar-shift, dollar-shrinking challenge. 2 out of 3 marketers said they would hand the changes down to the agencies to execute.

If you’re one of those 2 out of 3 – try your agency out. Put them in brainstormings to see if they can bring creative ways to help you through. If not, drop us a line and we’ll send you 5 ideas next week. Sometimes our solutions sound rather weird for a creative shop – like improving the efficiency of a process so it costs less. As creative entrepreneurs, this is business as usual for us – not just recession talk.