Optimism In The Face Of Austerity

The man who marketed London 2012 – Greg Nugent – has written a highly thought-provoking piece in Marketing magazine about austerity and the need for continued optimism.

His argument highlights some of the brands and innovations that were borne out of the great depression of the 1930s; and the inspiration this gave to the team at LOCOG when they were considering how to make the Games appropriate for the economic climate.

Working closely with retail and other consumer-focused businesses, who face a daily battle against the effects of austerity on their customers’ wallets, this argument is close to ORESA’s heart. So what should such businesses do to inspire confidence in their consumer audiences?

Customers have become battle-hardened to the financial climate. Nugent says this means contradictory signals are here to stay – with iPad sales remaining strong at the same time as consumers may turn their backs on expensive organic produce, for example.

Those selling to consumers need to be prepared to navigate these continued choppy waters ahead, or look to do something completely different. And that’s where optimism comes in.

Those that can offer up what Nugent describes as “more interesting versions of the future” have the chance to shine. It worked for businesses such as Revlon and Farrow & Ball in the past, and it will work for some of those who are optimistic in the face of austerity today too.