Business, when on the ropes, seems to pull back all expenses—focusing on maintaining the lifestyle and net of the owners. This approach, unfortunately, leads to the end of many businesses, especially when owners sacrifice their most important assets—people—to save themselves.
Businesses that have had epic comebacks typically have stories of ownership picking payroll over food for themselves. They believe so much in their business that they are willing to do anything to keep their power teams in place in order to have a second chance at business.
If my business were on the ropes, I would do the same—partly because I have already structured my business for a rainy day.
Ever since day one, I have fed my reserve. Yes, this meant less money for me in the short term, but long-term protection for those who I work with and the business I greatly believe in.
Just like any business, mine has ebb and flow months. When shake ups occur, I tend to spend more. I pump funds into marketing, advertising or recruitment. Why? Because money seems to heal many issues (when strategic about how it’s spent).
So many businesses cut back on PR, marketing, advertising, digital and staff when the business slides. But when you do that, you open your business up to even more slides. Great businesses find ways to limit those slides and prolong the upward movement.
If my business were on the ropes, the first place I would invest in is KPI performance from my existing team. I would incentivize around solutions and successes. If this meant me dipping into the reserve, so be it. It would be well-worth it to rely on those who I have relied on before to help find the next business spark. The second place I would invest in would be digital. I would evaluate and reevaluate my brand positioning on my website, and then pump as much funds as I could find into driving visitors to my site—planning that my call-to-action is so strong that it will create a new flow of customers. Naturally, as a PR firm, networking and traditional earned media would be a part of the process—finding creative moments to tell a story around.
Luckily, for many businesses, the economy is seemingly in a better place—meaning stronger unit-level economics and more stability. But, what if a rainy day comes? What if technology knocks everyone out of business? Are you prepared? Are you prepared to spend?
I am. And, I will.