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The year 2022 started out great, especially for small businesses. Covid restrictions were lifting, consumers were becoming more likely to spend money, and the economy looked great.

Since then, as you probably know, a lot has changed. In addition to the passing of Queen Elizabeth II and going through several prime ministers (we’ve lost count), we are now experiencing a significant shift in the UK economy – resulting in a sudden and unforeseen recession and a devastating cost of living crisis.

We recently wrote about the importance of not cutting your marketing budget during the recession as well as how you can reposition your brand to survive these tough times. Now that 2022 is almost over, it’s possible you’re wondering how on earth to plan your marketing for 2023 when things are so uncertain.

We’ve consulted our very own team of digital marketing experts to ask them what advice they can give to SME owners in terms of planning their marketing activities for the coming year, and we’d like to share this advice with you today.

Keep reading if you’d like to learn how to plan your digital marketing for 2023 despite the economic downturn.

Get to know your audience

If you’ve done any marketing in the past, you’ve probably investigated who your target market is and how to reach them effectively (but no worries if you haven’t done this yet!) According to our digital marketing strategists, knowing exactly who you’re marketing to is the foundation of any good marketing plan.

However, the difference for 2023 is that your audience will have changed. The consumers who could once afford your product may no longer be in a position to purchase from you. Furthermore, consumers may feel that your product or service is not essential right now – especially if they’re low on cash – and may only be prepared to support your business at a later stage.

Right now, you’re marketing to the consumers who can still afford your product. The audience you are speaking to are people who would view your product or service as necessary right now.

Spend some time researching who your new target audience is so that you can plan your activities around them. Check out this article to find out more about consumer shopping behaviour at the moment.

Reach your audience where they already are

Now that you know a bit more about who your audience is, you can give some thought to where you can best reach them. According to our digital marketing managers, although times are tough, people are still active on social media, are still reading marketing emails, and are still open to being sold to.

In other words, you don’t need to change your digital marketing channels because we are facing a recession. However, the difference is you will need to change up your messaging on these channels if you want to make sales in 2023.

Rather than posting on social media about how great your product is, focus on sharing content that may be useful or helpful to someone struggling financially. Our social media managers recommend offering information about your product or service that outlines how it could help someone who needs a little relief right now.

You could share cost-cutting tips, offer discounts on your products, and inform your audience about where they can find helpful resources if they’re facing financial turmoil.

Also, use your marketing channels to show that you are a brand that cares. This is more likely to attract new and returning customers – consumers who feel cared for are more inclined to convert.

Be careful about your messaging

Our paid advertising campaign managers have important advice to share with you. If you are running paid advertising in 2023, ensure that your copy and your creative don’t alienate your audience.

If you’re selling a luxury product by showcasing a high-income lifestyle, your target audience may feel that this is totally unattainable at this time and may even unfollow you or block your future ads.

The same thing goes for social media. If you’re posting pins on Pinterest that showcase the high life, you can imagine how low and discouraged this may make your audience feel because they can’t afford what you’re promoting.

Your marketing message, especially if you’re running paid advertising, should position your brand as one that cares about your customers and their present circumstances and offers discounts that may help them save money.

Our team of digital marketing experts can help you formulate an effective digital marketing plan for 2023 that assists you in making sales despite the turbulent times ahead. We’ve got all kinds of tricks up our sleeves to help position your brand as one that cares and offers essential items people need to buy. Visit our website to book a free consultation to find out how we can help you with your 2023 marketing planning and take your brand to new digital heights.

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