Today’s Editorial August 11: Opportunity knocks

With adversity often comes opportunity.

Whether it is in matters of love, health or business, it is the tough times that offer us the most opportunity for learning and growth.

No businessperson hopes for an economic downturn, just as no one hopes for ill health or a broken heart.

But when difficult times arrive, it is the best time for self-reflection or a re-evaluation of a company’s business plan.

It is therefore good to see some businesses in the Cayman Islands are doing just that. Instead of sitting back and simply trying to weather the economic storm, the owners of these companies are taking the opportunity to re-evaluate their businesses in effort to make them more competitive and efficient.

These business owners are looking at their overhead and operating costs to see where they can reduce expenses. They are finding some of these costs are unnecessary even in good times.

But rather than cutting back on advertising and promotion, these companies are now doing more to promote their business in an effort to attain a competitive advantage.

It’s tempting for a company owner, especially one with a small business, to cut back on advertising in response to a recession. But multiple marketing studies have shown that sales, and more importantly profits, drop off more for companies that cut back on advertising during a soft market than those that do not.

The studies also show that once prosperous times return, companies that cut back on advertising during a recession perform worse than companies that maintained or increased their advertising budget.

Since economies are cyclical and the Cayman Islands and the rest of the world will eventually come out of the financial doldrums, the proactive business owners are positioning their companies to emerge from the recession more efficient, more known and more profitable.