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What’s your Brexit marketing strategy?
By Nick Lovett - Managing Director Read time 5 Minutes 6th February 2019
As we enter into 2019 with no clear indication of what Brexit looks like for the UK, many clients are struggling to understand what impact Brexit is going to have on their business, and the sectors they operate in.
I believe marketing teams have a huge role to play in planning and shaping the future of their businesses. There are many different factors that are currently affecting customer confidence and subsequent actions:
- Future Employment Uncertainty
- Euro/ Dollar/ Pound exchange rate worries
- Changes to our Trade relationship with the EU post Brexit
- Legislation changes
- Rising Costs of Components
- Delays and Difficulties in the supply logistics chain
And many more.
Brexit marketing advice
Our advice to clients has been we need to cover all eventualities. And to achieve this in collaboration with clients, we have written 3 different 2019 marketing plans. These are called:
- Soft Brexit
- Hard Brexit
- No Brexit
Many activities and channels will remain the same in each plan but there will have to be some clear change management in each eventuality.
The different scenarios will also affect different sectors in different ways. For instance, some travel clients have seen a slow start to 2019 due to uncertainty about Brexit and freedom of travel across the union and flights. ABTA have released a hugely reassuring article to reassure Brits they are safe to commit to their well-earned break: https://www.abta.com/tips-and-advice/brexit-advice-for-travellers
Other B2B clients are finding their order books and production lines full as their customers look to stock pile key components with an apocalyptic buying mentality. One food distributor recently told me about containers full of beetroot being stock piled in their car park to ensure continuity of trade if the supply chain breaks in the case of a hard Brexit.
Other clients are protecting themselves by buying euros at a fixed rate to see them through a potentially turbulent exchange market period and thereby hedging their risk.
All of these examples will have a ripple effect on how the 2019 marketing deployment plan will need to be revised.
Do you market aggressively early in 2019 to secure your sales pipeline and orders? Or do you adopt a more cautious approach and be ready to react as the situation becomes clearer?
There simply is not one correct answer to cover all businesses. What is certain that Marketing Directors and Agency partners will need to be crunching all their available data constantly and making agile marketing decisions in readiness to deploy the right marketing plan from the choice of 3 as soon as the Brexit position is clarified.
To give all marketing folk food for thought – how do we all confidently put together plans for 2020 when our year on year data is likely to be hugely out of kilter? So, it may be at least a couple of years of running multiple scenarios and there might not be a reliable algorithm to automate the process.
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