Since most of us have received an engraved invitation to participate in the global recession, we should consider proper etiquette. For one thing, we should stop spending money on fancy espresso drinks at the local coffee bar. For another, we should consider putting off the dream vacation we promised ourselves. Let’s batten down the hatches and chart a risk-free course to weather the turbulent economic storm.
This is precisely the OPPOSITE of what we should do. The current recession provides a great opportunity for ADR providers. Since people and companies have less disposable income, ADR will be a far more attractive route for them to pursue than litigation. So, sell the cost savings your services will provide! Plus, because many of your competitors, being less savvy than you, will cut back on their marketing expenses, your investment in your business will pay greater dividends.
While I recommend that you eliminate as many unproductive business expenses as possible, the one area you cannot–must not–cut back on is investment in expanding your business. If you don’t invest, you get weaker. And the weaker fail faster.
Not all investments cost a lot. They do take some time and effort, however. In particular, I encourage you to put into action marketing tools you have at your disposal.
For instance, I recommend that you:
- Expand your set of contacts by increasing the amount of time and number of places where you network,
- Follow up with anyone who shows the slightest interest in your services,
- Write papers on topics on which you have expertise, and disseminate them to interested parties,
- Give lunchtime talks to local groups who could benefit from your services,
- Contact the local arbitration and mediation associations near you and get involved
- Contact the local, regional, national, and international panels to find professional representative for your services.
- Devote one day this week to marketing. On your “marketing day,” make calls, write articles, draft speeches, send emails, go to networking events, and have lunch with associates.
During a recession it’s important to remember that this is the time to expand – not contract.