Six Tips for Thriving in Today’s Economy

    April 24, 2003

Sure, it’s tough out there. Nevertheless, both consumers and businesses are buying. Here are a few tips to help you acquire and retain more business.

Market, market, market

This is your big break. Your competition is scared of spending money to market their business. They are occupied with internal issues. Strike now. Build ROI models for marketing, research, and advertising. Smart managers use soft media demand to cut through the clutter and get real bang for the buck.

Get Vertical

Low on marketing dough? Set your target tighter. Do some research and focus on a smaller region, market segment, or customer size and grow out from there. You can focus on specific verticals that need and appreciate the fact that you understand the nuances of their industry and their business.

Go Down Market

Maybe your technology is too complex to integrate into a Fortune 500 company. How about tweaking it for a smaller enterprise. Like the tip above, this is the marketing equivalent of becoming a bigger fish in a smaller pond. Do it and dominate. You can leverage the success into new business faster.


Think hard. What can you do fastest to bring an immediate, measurable result to your customer? Maybe it’s not what got you into your business initially. Assess your prospects through this speed lens. Dump the ones who can’t keep up, double your efforts and resources with the ones who can.

Fire Bad Customers

Some weeding out is necessary and that includes customers. Does that surprise you? Don’t work for customers who aren’t profitable or don’t help you improve your business process. They drain resources and they will drop you as soon as they get a better deal elsewhere. Implement a process to determine real dollar customer value.

Deliver Service

To borrow from a popular ad campaign…. cost to acquire a new customer, $8. Cost to retain a current customer, $1. Brilliant customer service… priceless.

Yes, you hear it all the time, but what are you doing about it. It’s often the smallest actions that foster the deepest loyalty. Be genuine and you’ll drive more revenue.

Tom Barnes is CEO of Mediathink , an Atlanta-based media consultancy specializing in marketing strategy and implementation.