Recession? What Recession?

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I was on the phone the other day with John Davis, a friend and associate from Dallas, Texas. John runs a couple of very successful companies and is one of the brightest people I know when it comes to marketing and business development.

In our discussion we talked about the economy and how it was impacting businesses in nearly every industry across the board. John got me laughing when he said how he got his entire staff together in a meeting and actually took a vote on whether or not they would participate in the recession. Not surprisingly, they all voted not to participate.

Last year John’s business was up 14 percent over the previous year, and this year he’s up 20 percent over that. Why? Because John and his staff have decided to continue to act as if there is no recession. They’re pushing ahead with full steam, marketing as they’ve always done, and continuing to get results.

But the results they’re getting are not the same as they’ve always gotten… they’re better. And here’s why.

Let’s say there are 4 companies in a certain area that are competing for the same customers to buy their products or services. And let’s say that three of those companies read the papers and heard that the economy is in a recession. So they cut back on their advertising and promotions. They discontinue sending mailings and offers to their customers and clients. And they act like they’re “supposed to” act when times get slow.

But the fourth company pays no attention to the recession. They just keep on doing what they’ve done previously. Will they get the same results as there were getting? Probably not. In fact, they will most likely get even better results than they were getting even in the recessionary times.

How can this be? Because they’re the only ones advertising, marketing, promoting and keeping in touch with their customers, clients, and those who could become their customers and clients.

When everyone else minimizes their presence and in effect pull out of the market, those who remain command a much more visible presence and increase their chances of being seen by those who are in the market for what the company sells. In a very real sense, they get a bigger bang for their advertising and marketing dollar. And as a result, they’ll likely capture a bigger share of the market.

Now a note of clarification. A recession can be real… very real. And I don’t want to minimize that. Recessionary times can cause havoc on businesses, on the economy and on people’s lives. I understand that and I acknowledge that.

My point is, how a business manages their attitudes and activities in down times can have a major impact on the success of that business. In a recession, business may be down for all businesses. But the business that acts to the best of their ability and as if there is no recession stands to gain more (in terms of customer retention, new customer acquisition, public presence, etc.) than those who throw in the towel and give in.

I lead a Mastermind Group of 12 top marketing and business development consultants that meet every two weeks to discuss some of the top challenges businesses are having, how to best solve those challenges, and how to market our services to others who can benefit from them.

The subject of recessions came up on last night’s call. It was interesting to hear the comments from the consultants as they talked about the economy, the President’s comments about the jobless rate, company layoff’s, and the like.

After listening for awhile, I reminded them that I live in Phoenix, Arizona, and a couple of years ago we hosted the Super Bowl. I mentioned that our newspaper had several articles about the happenings that surrounded this event, and that while the recession may be a reality for some it’s not even a thought for others. Here are a few examples.

Super Bowl Parties

Hosted by: Pamela Anderson and Phoenix Suns player Shawn Marion
Price: $1,000 – $5,500

Hosted by: ESPN’s Chris Berman and Jay Leno
Price: $1,250 – $10,000

Hosted by: Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Terrell Owens
Price: $550 – $850

Hosted by: P. Diddy, Nick Lachey, NASCAR champ Jimmie Johnson, with guests; Michael Jordan, Peyton Manning, Charles Barkley, Steve Nash, Dale Earnhardt Jr., Justin Timberlake, Ashlee Simpson, Carmen Electra, and Brooke Burke
Price: $200 – $1,000

Those were just 4 out of the 35 parties that were listed. The headliners or hosts of those parties read like a Who’s Who in the entertainment, sports, and celebrity world, and several were priced higher than those I mentioned. I’m sure there were more parties that didn’t find their way into the article.

Travel

Phoenix’s Sky Harbor International Airport was reported to be jammed, and more than 1,000 charter flights and executive jets, along with the regularly scheduled full flights were expected to make it an absolute madhouse.

There were 73,000 seats in the stadium, but “tens of thousands more were to come to the Valley to help stage the extravaganza and the dozens of happenings and parties preceding the main event,” the paper said, “and thousands more ticketless fans will come just to be part of the excitement.”

Tickets

How much did it cost to attend? “In a typical year, the price of Super Bowl tickets will fall as it gets closer to game, say ticket brokers. But a spokesman for StubHub, the largest online ticket reseller had tickets going for $4,190 on average on Tuesday.”

According to Google, “A luxury suite of your own at Super Bowl XLII in Glendale, Ariz., went $224,825.”

How Does This Relate To You?

What does all this Super Bowl stuff of a few years ago have to do with you, and why would I spend considerable time on it?

Simply this. Times are in the same basic economic shape as they were when the Super Bowl was here. Still rough. Still undecided. And still problematic. But while some people were (and are) talking (and living) “recession”, others were (and are) living their lives as though times were never so plenty. Some people are spending money like crazy and others are cutting back.

I attended a two-day seminar last weekend. There were 360 people in attendance from as far away as Australia, the U.K., Switzerland, and Canada. The price to attend was $2,497, and a $15,000 upsell was offered. Revenues from the upsell only (not counting the admission fee) amounted to $840,000… and we’re in a “recession”!

Businesses in every profession, industry and niche are cutting back, putting a hold on advertising, marketing, promotional, and business growth efforts, and even laying off key employees.

And others are moving ahead with full speed, not only on their business growth and expansion plans, but the owners living life on their own terms and spending tons of money on non business-related things like plane tickets, expensive parties, concerts and game tickets… none of which contribute in any way to the growth or preservation of their business. Yes, some will write off their expenses, and others may even take a client or potential client along as a business expense. But for the most part, a lot of the money they spend is out of pocket and not directly related to the person’s business.

Now more than ever, business owners need what our TopLine Consultants have to offer. With nearly 1,200 consultants in 36 countries around the world, we are bringing solutions to the every day problems business owners are facing in these tough times.

By helping businesses be more successful and more profitable, we are preserving jobs and in many cases creating new jobs. We’re bringing messages of hope to business owners by showing them that like John Davis and his crew, they really don’t have to participate in the recession… at least not like others are.

Yes, these slow times may and in many cases, will affect certain businesses. But to the extent they are affected is largely dependent on how the owners and employees deal with it. Job creation and job preservation… two key and very fundamental byproducts of what TopLine Business Solutions Consultants are involved with.

Now is the time to be using your hard-earned business experience to help other business owners realize and capitalize on the untapped and overlooked potential of their businesses, and help them grow their bottom line profits in these “recessionary” times, and get paid huge sums of money for nothing more than providing them with ideas, concepts and strategies, many of which they’ve never thought of.

If there’s anything I can do to help you achieve this… or any of your financial goals, please let me know. I’m very interested in your success!

Martin Howey, CEO
TopLine Business Success


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