I keep hearing negative job reports in the news. The Economic Policy Institute reports that the U.S. has fewer jobs now than it did nine years ago in May of 2000.
The irony is that I was downsized in June of 2001, after a nine year career in the cable advertising business. By this logic I can assume that the recession we are in right now actually started back then.
Local advertising is the first to be cut from business budgets, but as you can see more frequently on television, Walmart has stepped up it's advertising campaign.
The big national restaurant chains and big box stores have the ability to compete in a way that local businesses cannot. Lowes, for example, can drastically reduce the price of plywood in Springfield for a time, while raising the price of plywood and other products in South Bend to make up the difference. Local stores cannot do this, unless they can work out some sort of system with their distributors. Good luck with that.
Because of the Internet, the entire nature of advertising is changing. The impact of newspapers, television and radio is greatly diminished because the audience is turning to search engines that lead the consumer off into individual realms unknown by potential advertisers.
Consumers will not be nearly as influenced by advertising as before. Advertising is based on centuries of behavior research that yielded tools that reach into the subconscious mind of the public. I'll never tell.
Now, meaning and value are fragmented along with the audience. People will search for what they need, and there is no way that advertising on it's own will raise the volume of consumption.
The only thing to do is get yourself a blog and just submit posts about your business. Your customers will find you.