A recession, especially one as deep and long and the current one prompts controllers and CFOs to take the proverbial axe to ad budgets. That has increasingly been the case particularly after it was officially announced that the US economy has been in recession since December 2007. However, a Forbes.com article cites quotes a strongly opposing perspective as enunciated by Wharton marketing professor Peter Fader. The professor correctly notes that "as companies slash advertising in a downturn, they leave empty space in
consumers' minds for aggressive marketers to make strong inroads". Another Wharton professor, Leonard Lodish, echoes that sentiment and adds that "with demand slack for
advertising services, the cost of these services goes down, making
advertising expenditures all the more defensible in a bad business
climate. "If your company has something to say that is relevant in this
environment, it's going to be more efficient to say it now than to say
it in better times,"
While some in the hospitality and the larger tour and travel industry (as in many others) are slashing ad budgets owing to hard economic times a few like the Orlando/Orange County Convention & Visitors Bureau are rightly clamoring for more ad dollars. Hotel operators who emulate that example are likely to reap better than ever rewards as a consequence. Nevertheless, leaner times make it all the more imperative to have the right message out unlike this one from a major corporation which seems to endorse a theme that promotes suicide and is arguably suicidal for business.