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Can we market our way out of an economic downturn?

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Is anyone else starting to feel jaded by watching the news? All I hear is gloom and doom about the economy, high unemployment rates and political discourse as we begin to prepare for the upcoming presidential race.

I can’t take it any longer! Quite honestly, depressing news depresses me. This got me thinking—can we market our way out of an economic downturn?

I think everyone is in agreement that we are not going to spend our way out of an economic slump, but rather we need to invest and sell our way out of our economic troubles. In meeting with my fellow marketers this summer, we all collectively agreed that our businesses were performing better than most. What did we all have in common? Not only were we all “catalogers,” but I would argue we are all passionate marketers. It was clear that we all continued to market, even during the downtimes, and understood that marketing offsets any sales decreases.

In order to stay ahead of the competition, we need to innovate and develop ways to generate larger profits. An integrated search engine optimization (SEO) strategy plays a key role in marketing during an economic downturn. If you thought mastering SEO was hard enough, you now need to develop an integrated plan, across multiple digital channels, in order to build a web of connections. The No. 1 question to ask when developing SEO content is, “Is this shareable?”

Using your optimized webpage as a starting point, you need to think beyond the optimized text for integrated SEO. You need to link this page, with your desired keywords, to as many connections in order to make the content more shareable and ultimately more engaging to your audience.

You need to develop several Tweets, Facebook posts and a short YouTube video, all linked to the optimized page, including your keyword(s), as early as possible. The opportunities don’t end here. Get involved. Start discussions in online groups (such as LinkedIn groups), send optimized publicity releases to your media outlets, blog about the content, create presentations and make them available for download on the Web (think distributors, customers, and industry associations).

Will an integrated SEO plan save us from an economic downturn? I am not sure, but I would prefer to focus my time and efforts on something that I can directly influence, such as making sure my target audience can find and ultimately buy what I have to sell. Staying on top of the latest search engine tactics ensures strengthening connections with people seeking our product or services.

There is little downside to building a web of connections. All the extra connections continue to create opportunities for engagement while keeping our brands top of mind.

Now is the time to sell our way out of this economy. Are you ready for the challenge?

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