Best Practices

How to Energize Your Marketing Team in a Recession

While a recession definitely poses a challenge to your business, it’s still possible to inspire and motivate your marketing team.


It’s no secret that a recession is looming. A massive economic downturn can harm any business, no matter the industry. As a marketer, you might wonder how to keep your team motivated and engaged in a precarious economy. After all, if your company has less money to spend on operations and advertising, you may not be able to invest as much as you’d like in marketing.

These steps can help you energize your team and enhance your marketing efforts during financial uncertainty. 

Focus on what you can control

You can't control a recession, but you can focus on how you approach your marketing strategy. Work with your team to identify where you can cut costs, and how you can make the most of limited financial resources. While widespread economic uncertainty isn’t ideal for any business, you can use this time to find opportunities to develop your team’s creativity and unique skills. 


Play the long game

It’s easy to feel impatient during a recession. When you and your team have ambitious goals you want to achieve, reaching those goals in a slow economy can feel close to impossible. Use this time to map out your business’s long-term goals with your marketing team. Collaborate with your top achievers to determine how you will achieve those goals. Allowing your team to be involved in the long-term decision-making process will make them feel valued, supported, and more excited about working toward your goals. 

Celebrate the wins 

One of the best and most effective ways to keep your team engaged is to celebrate their successes. As you measure the impact of your different marketing efforts, from qualifying the metrics of your new referral program to assessing the ROI on each campaign, let your team know how much you appreciate their hard work and flexibility. Recognizing and rewarding your team for their successes helps them stay motivated to go above and beyond, especially during difficult financial times. 

Start a referral marketing program 

A referral marketing program is an exciting and cost-effective way to energize your marketing team. In a recession, consumers are especially mindful about how and where they spend their money. They are more likely to give their business to companies they know and trust. Implementing a referral marketing program is a fantastic way to win them over. 

In a referral marketing program, your existing customers receive a unique link that they can use to promote your product or business with their friends, family and social networks. The link might offer a discount on their first order or credits toward a future service. The referring customer receives a small cut of every sale converted through their unique link. Customer referrals show potential clients that your product is worth their hard-earned money, and your existing customers will also appreciate the financial reward and opportunity to be more involved in your company’s success. 

A referral marketing program is a great opportunity for your marketing team to get creative about referral promotions and incentives. Will you focus on social media or email referrals? What will your referral marketing materials look like? Allow your team to determine how, where and with whom they’ll promote the new referral program. They will enjoy the opportunity to build relationships with new and existing customers and take ownership of a new and exciting program. 

Remember that a recession is temporary

Nothing lasts forever, even a recession. While you and your marketing team will have to make some significant changes in the coming months, remind them that this recession will pass, just like the ones before it. 

Lead by example

Your team will feel energized and engaged if they see that you feel that way, too. After all, they take their cues from you and the other leaders in your business. Maintain a positive attitude and collaboration spirit so your team feels guided and supported throughout this difficult time. 

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