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When money is tight, advertising and marketing is always the first expense to be eliminated. Yet, this isn’t always the wise choice. With Phase 1 of reopening beginning in Florida on Monday, May 4th, there might not be a better time to promote your business.

During down times advertising allows your business to be at the front of the line. All media outlets have reported a sharp downturn in advertising and many cancellations when the COVID-19 crisis inevitably closed most businesses. Aaron Pulley, senior account executive with iHeartMedia Palm Beach and the Treasure Coast estimated business was down between 35-65% in April. While he anticipates advertisers will come back in May, it will not be anywhere near the pre-crisis level. If you act fast and are one of the first in, there is little clutter to cut through. Your message will be louder and clearer than the businesses behind you.

When it comes to television, eyes on advertising messages have increased with everyone staying home. Brett Dugas of Comcast EffecTv reports stats are showing viewership has increased year to year 48%, news networks are up 70%, and this means advertisers who are active are reaching these audiences in numbers unheard of just a few weeks ago.

History has proven those who choose to advertise now, often come out ahead of their competition. A few examples of companies capitalizing on downturns in the economy can be noticed during the great depression. Post cereal cut back all ad spending, while Kellogg’s doubled down and introduced a new cereal – Rice Krispies. Kellogg’s remains the market leader in their industry to this day. During the 1990-1991 recession, McDonald’s cut ad spending, while Taco Bell and Pizza Hut stayed active. McDonald’s sales dropped 28%, while Taco Bell’s grew 40%, and Pizza Hut’s increased 61%. Most recently in 2008, which was a brutal year for the auto industry, Hyundai’s sales rose by 2%, and their revenue rose 5%. This was largely due to their “Hyundai Assurance Program” campaign, this campaign emphasized their buy-back programs and resonated with consumers who had recently lost their jobs.

Be aware, however, messaging is even more important as we enter Phase 1 of our reopening. Maybe your business performs an essential service and never had to close. On Monday, restaurant dining rooms and retail at limited capacity will reopen in the Treasure Coast, but not in Palm Beach County. What is important to communicate is HOW you are open for business. Most restaurants that stayed open were open only for takeout and delivery. If this has changed in Phase 1, it’s time to let people know! Even more important, you need to let people know what you have changed about your business to ensure the safety of your customers as well as you staff. Above all else, communicate what you can do differently for your potential customer to make their lives better or to solve a problem they may be experiencing during the pandemic. Be mindful a lot of people have not fared well economically through this and your messaging should be sensitive to this fact.

If you don’t know where to start, rest assured, all advertising companies are finding creative ways to produce commercials for local businesses to deliver unique messages to the community. This important since it makes an emotional connection and creates trust for your business. It also sets you apart from the competition and allows the public to see you as a standout among the many while reminding them you are open for business.

Comcast Effective is currently working with local businesses to make sure they are in front of the local community by offering unique opportunities tailored to their budgets. To get your ads in front of all the in-home viewers, reach out to Brett Dugas at 772-284-1677 or email him at brett_dugas@comcast.com

iHeartMedia with 10 radio stations throughout Palm Beach and the Treasure Coast have also been offering special pricing including half-price deals and some trade to the service industry.

You can Contact Aaron Pulley for more information at 561-351-8240 or by email at aaronpulley@iheartmedia.com

Regardless of how your business operated during Phase 1 and the rest of the Phases to reopening Florida, now is the BEST TIME to get a jump start on the competition and promote your business.  

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