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Seminar Review
Marketing in a downturn
The best companies don’t cut marketing spend in a downturn, they do the opposite because
even in the toughest conditions provide plenty of opportunities – and that was the topic for
the first ever Database Marketing seminar held in London last month. Antony Begley reports.
hether it’s a credit crunch, a recession, a Sheep and of course Marketing Improvement.
depression or a downturn we’re living Chaired by Database Marketing managing editor
through, the realization has finally Antony Begley, the seminar gave delegates face to
dawned on most marketers that this problem is not face access to the experience and expertise of the
one that’s going to go away any time soon – certainly some of the industry’s most respected practitioners.
not within the next six to nine months, and possibly The unique event delivered unrivalled access to
not even in 2009 or even in 2010. valuable insights that ensured delegates’ marketing
It’s not every day
Yet, there are still plenty of reasons for optimism activities would deliver the results required, even
you get the
about the future as even the most difficult slowdowns against the current economic backdrop.
chance to present opportunities for bold marketers. This was the Event manager Cara Thomson explains: “The semi-
discuss your
topic of the first ever seminar organised by Database nar was the perfect opportunity for the delegates to
Marketing magazine and held in London last month. get up close and personal with some of the best in
Run in association with Marketing Improvement, the business.
specific data
the high level strategic seminar reflected the maga- “Let’s face it, it’s not every day you get the chance
challenges and
zine’s steadfast refusal to succumb to the doom and to discuss your business’s specific data challenges and
issues with the gloom mongers predicting the end of the world as we issues with the calibre of marketers we had available
calibre of
know it. Billed as a seminar for ‘marketers who want on the day and all of the delegates were encouraged
marketers we
to make a difference’, the Marketing In A Downturn to make use of what was effectively ‘free consultancy’
had available.
Seminar was hosted in central London and was creat- that would ordinarily have them thousands of
ed to demonstrate how and why data is key to suc- pounds.
cess in an economic slowdown. “I’m glad to say that many delegates grasped the
The best companies don’t cut marketing spend in a opportunity and having listened in on the face to
downturn, they do the opposite. They know that face sessions in the afternoon, it was very clear that
even the toughest market conditions still provide all of the delegates found the sessions extremely use-
plenty of opportunity. The event strived to help high ful and productive, in a very practical sense.
level delegates identify how to do three things: “I know from speaking to the presenters in the
ensure they protect their marketing budget, deliver wake of the seminar that they also took a lot from
results when customers are slowing their buying and the day – so I think it’s fair to say that the event was
take advantage of their competitors’ difficulties. a great success for all of those that made the effort to
The event brought together some of the leading attend and I’m sure they returned to their businesses
practitioners from the direct marketing industry the next day with a lot of fresh ideas and inspiration
including top end speakers from leading businesses that they could put to good use immediately.”
such as Marketing Databasics, Tangible Data, Blue Among the speakers on the day were Marketing
Tim Beadle, director, Janet Snedden, managing Iain Lovatt, executive Warwick Beresford-Jones, Paul Schulz, director,
Marketing Improvement director, Tangible Data chairman, Blue Sheep head of analysis, Marketing Marketing Improvement
18 Database Marketing February 2009
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