ISBA Conference: Marketers can help lead the UK out of recession, according to IPA president and M&C Saatchi Worldwide chief executive Moray MacLennan.
Speaking at the ISBA conference in London today (March 4), MacLennan says that someone has to ““step up to the plate” and that should be marketers.
He says that marketing in these straitened times is not just about creating demand but about changing the mood, and the time is right for marketers to act.
MacLennan points out that an upturn in the economy historically starts after five to six consecutive quarters of negative growth and the UK could be half-way through that period so marketers should prepare now for that recovery.
He adds that, although the more “enlightened” chief financial officers realise that marketing improves earnings potential, a significant number of companies are cutting marketing budgets.
As a result, MacLennan says, marketers and agencies need to “think smaller and think harder” to reach consumers.
He adds there is not one recession in the UK but 65m individual recessions affecting consumer behaviour in different ways with many different strategies on how to cope with economic difficulties.
Groups include “crash dieters”, who are keeping a close eye on their budgets and will cut out non-essential spending, “scrimpers”, who trade down but do not cut out altogether and “treaters” who cut back but spend to reward themselves.