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Brexit for B2B marketers: The ride of your life

In times of political and economic uncertainty, marketers can provide much–needed support and direction for their leaders, says Claire Mason, CEO of Man Bites Dog

Brexit has thrown business into uncharted territory, and as we try to make sense of conflicting economic indicators and divided opinions the fear is palpable. With long-term uncertainty ahead, the pressure for companies to find clarity is growing.

For many organisations, cost cutting is a knee-jerk reaction to gaining control. Marketing and sales budgets are easy targets, leaving many marketers holding  their breath and their firepower.

But is the fear actually worse than the fall? Can brave organisations beat their cautious competitors? And what does all this mean for marketers? Having weathered a recent recession, cutting costs in already lean companies won’t yield results; now’s the time for leaders to prove their mettle by enhancing the top-line, rather than cutting the bottom.

Marketing’s role is to assure the future of the company by building a sales pipeline with enough momentum to enable leaders to make confident decisions. In this brave new world, marketers and PR professionals need to look ahead and take the lead, becoming strategic advisors and helping organisations navigate and capitalise on this economic rollercoaster.

Internal messaging is as crucial as external comms in terms of drawing people together and providing the direction needed to thrive. Externally, there’s an obvious opportunity for companies and marketers to create their own competitive advantage, and fill the white space opening up as everyone else continues to hang back. As one business leader recently said to me: “Waiting is death.”

While Britain’s in limbo, global opportunities are still on the table and there will undoubtedly be pockets within our economy that will continue to perform. Companies need to harness their potential energy, brave the ride and continue to move forward through this period of uncertainty.

We need to remember that as marketers we have a valuable set of skills and experiences we can draw on to support and advise decision-makers in these white-knuckle times. It’s likely to be a period of high highs and low lows, so buckle up!