Small-to-medium enterprises (SMEs) working out their strategies to combat the economic downturn have been pointed in the direction of direct marketing.

In his column on SME Web, Dr Peter Hughes at Cognition PR, a Birmingham-based marketing firm, has underlined the benefits of reaching out to targets directly.

According to Dr Hughes, direct marketing – with its easily measured return on investment – is a much more sensible promotional technique during the recession, compared to massive advertising campaigns.

“In general, use those communication channels, particularly digital, PR and direct marketing, which are most measurable,” Dr Hughes advised.

“Even in good times, large scale advertising is wasteful for most SMEs – in a downturn it is suicidal.”

Dr Hughes’ comments are echoed by the views of head of communications and external affairs at the Chartered Institute of Marketing, Ray Jones, who recently urged marketers to carefully choose the technology which can aid them in financially challenging times.

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