3 reasons not to cut the marketing budget during the crisis

Aleš Randa

4 min

Writing off marketing during a crisis is the second most serious corporate transgression, after shutting down the company coffee machine. It may work in the short term, but in the long run it is a big mistake that will backfire on the brand. Find out why in today's article.

By cutting off marketing, you lose all visibility

People see up to 10,000 ads a day1. It's not easy to make your brand visible in the traffic, and whether the money flows into creative, SEO or influencers, it's not cheap. But what happens if the CFO shuts down finance?

The implications of stopping ads were recently explored by the Australian University Institute of Marketing2. And they're not pretty numbers:

  • Even if the company saves on costs in the short term, its revenue will fall by up to 25% in the long term.
  • For small businesses that have already seen their profits fall, this effect will come more quickly than for larger companies.
  • If you return to your original marketing budget after a year, your revenue will only start to grow slowly if you were already in an expansion phase. If, on the other hand, you have reached stability, your revenue is more likely to continue to decline.

Another review on branding further notes that by discontinuing your marketing strategy, you lose consistency in the eyes of buyers, which otherwise increases company revenue by up to 33%3.

Brand trust, brand image and customer loyalty suffer without marketing

General who runs away from the battle loses all respect and trust. And so it is with brands in times of crisis. If you withdraw from the marketing field, people will absolutely forget about you and learn to trust the competition more, which, unlike you, will stay.

Restricting ads deprives you of a unique opportunity to make your brand a shining light of hope that stands no matter what. And if people make sure they can trust you, they are then willing to pay half the price no matter what4. It is a pure display of loyalty that is literally worth fighting for.

Helping and pro-social behaviour sells best during a crisis

The vast majority of people believe their decisions can change the world for the better, and 88% hope your brand will help them do just that5. Moreover, company ethics and values influence the purchasing decisions of more than half of buyers6 and if a company lags in this regard, up to 61% of customers would rather switch brands or buy a non-branded alternative7.

Crises only amplify these human needs and this is a unique opportunity for your brand to start helping. But without marketing, you won't be able to communicate your pro-social actions, especially if you limit it so much that you lose all reach.

So try to do your best on social media, which studies show has the biggest impact on brand image and customer loyalty8.

Reduce the cost of your ads with reviews

Using reviews in ads is a new trend that is quickly gaining popularity. In a crisis, online reviews can help you mainly for the following reasons:

  • The content of reviews is a unique source of inspiration. Whether you use them literally as headline banners or just get inspired by what they say, you're always taking a lot of the creative work away from the copywriters and thus reducing your costs.
  • People trust reviews more than regular marketing, they're like advice from a friend. Investing in them is therefore often more profitable than the traditional approach to advertising.
  • Well-placed reviews can boost conversions by up to tens of percent.

Find out what more you can do with reviews.


  1. 35+ Amazing Advertising Statistics [2022] – Zippia. (2022, December 3). https://www.zippia.com /advice/advertising-statistics/
  2. What happens when brands stop advertising? (2021, August 10). Ehrenberg-Bass Institute for Marketing Science. https://www.marketingscience.info/ when-brands-stop-advertising/
  3. Mohsin, M. (2022, May 16). 10 Branding Statistics You Need to Know in 2022 [Infographic]. https://www.oberlo.com/blog/branding-statistics
  4. Mohsin, M. (2022, May 16). 10 Branding Statistics You Need to Know in 2022 [Infographic]. https://www.oberlo.com/ blog/branding-statistics
  5. Townsend, S. (2018, November 21). 88% Of Consumers Want You To Help Them Make A Difference. Forbes. https://www.forbes.com/sites/solitairetownsend/2018/11/21/ consumers-want-you-to-help-them-make-a-difference/?sh=29ff59736954
  6. Kelly, C. (2021, March 25). Study: Brand activism sways buying behavior, brand impression for 58% of consumers. Marketing Dive. https://www.marketingdive.com/news/study-brand-activism-sways- buying-behavior-brand-impression-for-58-of-co/597290/
  7. Future Consumer Index: Five consumer types you need to understand. (n.d.). ey.com. Retrieved December 17, 2022, from https://www.ey.com/en_gl/consumer-products-retail/five-types-of- consumer-that-you-need-to-understand
  8. Budiman, S. (2021). The Effect of Social Media on Brand Image and Brand Loyalty in Generation Y. Journal of Asian Finance, Economics and Business, 8(3), 1339–1347. https://doi.org/10.13106 /jafeb.2021.vol8.no3.1339

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