Whether you listen to the radio, watch television, or read the newspaper—or all of the above—it is amazing how much advertising out there seems to be recession-focused. “When times are tough, we’re the ______ to turn to.” “The economy has hit you hard… but this sale lets you hit back.” “We’re giving you the kind of value that even the recession can’t take away.” And even, “Because of the recession, we need your business more than ever!” (I swear. I really did hear that in a commercial on the radio.)
Next, someone is going to offer the consumer a sale price... on a bridge they can jump off of.
In Elm Street Economics workshops all over the country, we’ve spent the past eight months warning people to beware of “recession fatigue.” In other words, be watching for that point in time when people are sick and tired of all the tough economic news, and are ready to move on.
Finally, there is a story in today’s New York Times on this topic; the article points-out the positive messaging that is currently being offered by General Electric, Bank of America, Levi’s and others.
Implications: It might not be time to start singing “Happy Days Are Here Again,” but it might certainly be time to stop beating the dead horse that is the recession.
Economists and statistics working the way they do, an “official” recovery will not be announced until months after it has begun. So if you’re waiting for that official announcement, you’re likely to be the last one in to the good-news pool.
Does it occur to you that gasoline costs two-or-more dollars per gallon LESS than it did during the summer of 2008? That inflation, for the moment, is completely under control? That the “buyer’s market” of aggressive selling strategies has made the consumer’s dollar more powerful than it’s been in years?
With so much good news to work with—including rumors that a recovery might be underway—why would anyone dwell on the negativity… when the consumer is so tired of it?