In a time of economic contraction, it can be tempting to cut back on what you might consider to be non-essential expenses, including public relations (PR). However, this is often a short-sighted mistake that sets companies back in multiple ways. Companies that cut back on public relations efforts as soon as consumer confidence takes a nosedive, often make it harder for themselves to retain existing customers and attract new customers once economic stability and growth return. The truth is that during these times is when PR can have the greatest impact on your cannabis brand and business.
Here are four reasons why PR should be a must-have in your business’s economic downturn survival kit:
Positioning Yourself as an Industry Leader
During an economic downturn, competition is fierce as businesses fight for their share of a shrinking market. PR can help you differentiate your brand from your competitors by continuing to tell your unique story, showcasing the value you offer, and maintaining a healthy public facing presence with your target market. In addition, you’ll be keeping your foot on the gas while others might be hitting the brakes on PR efforts. This results in you gaining a significant edge on the competition by expanding while others are contracting.
Building Trust with Customers
PR can help you build trust with new and existing customers by communicating transparently and honestly about your business, especially during tough times. This can help increase customer loyalty and set you apart from businesses that are less forthcoming with information. Contributing articles, connecting with industry experts on podcasts, and sharing how you’re persisting through tough times can not only help amplify awareness, but also play a significant role in building trust and establishing credibility with new and existing customers. This will help make attracting new business easier once the economic storm settles. Think of it this way, you’ll be building momentum the entire time while others decide to fall asleep at the wheel and pick back up later (whenever “later” is). This is an attractive sign of commitment to serving a market, and decision makers will notice, admire, and appreciate it.
PR is often a cost-effective alternative to more traditional forms of marketing. With PR, you can reach a wide audience with little investment compared to most paid media costs, and increase brand visibility and recognition. Let’s not forget, maintaining your PR efforts while others are cutting back on theirs gives you a competitive advantage to earn even more market share and brand equity without having to necessarily increase your investment of time, energy, or resources.
A recession can bring with it a range of challenges and crises that can threaten your business’s reputation. PR can help you navigate these challenges by helping you manage your reputation and communicate effectively with customers and stakeholders. This brings us back to what we mentioned about building trust and maintaining a healthy public facing presence with your target market. You don’t want to just let things fall as they may. If you do, you’ll be scrambling to pick up the broken pieces, win back previous business, and acquire new customers who may now be on the fence about choosing a competitor who was building trust and establishing credibility while you were on the sidelines.
Investing in PR during a recession can help your business grow and succeed. From standing out in a crowded market to building trust with customers, PR can be a cost-effective tool to help you weather the storm and come out on top. So, don't hesitate to invest in PR efforts when you’re anticipating a tough road ahead – it could make all the difference for your business before, during, and after. Reach out to Green Lane Communication today to learn how we can help your brand and business maintain strong public relations to set your cannabis company up for success—no matter what’s happening in the economy.