Harry Truman, Stuart Elliot And The Deal Makers

By SuperSpy 

Harry S. Truman said that It’s a recession when your neighbor loses his job; it’s a depression when you lose yours.” Were truer words ever spoken?

The venerable Stuart Elliot has taken on the recession in his most recent piece for the Grey Lady. He offers a bit of histroical perspective such as:


“The willingness of Madison Avenue to act as if a recession is under way may seem confusing, because advertisers usually reduce their spending during downturns. Over all, ad outlays have fallen in previous recessions — 6.5 percent in 2001 compared with 2000 and 1.2 percent in 1991 compared with 1990.

However, many marketers spend the same — or even more — during hard times as they do during booms, on the theory that they must make sure to be remembered by any consumers who are still shopping. And advertisers in competitive categories like automobiles, beer or fast food are reluctant to cut spending if their rivals are not.”

Elliot also offers a recent list of advertisements driven by the threat of a recession including recent spots from Wal-Mart and campaigns from Sizzler. We wish Elliot had offered some advice on how best to weather a recession considering the man has seen it all from the 1987 stock market crash, to the 1990-1 recession and the bubble burst in 2000-1.

Meanwhile, AdWeak is focused on the acquisition angle of the recession. According to a new survey from AdMedia Partners, “more than two-thirds of the 3,300 top executives who participated in the survey of Merger & Acquisition Prospects for Marketing Services and Internet Marketing Firms said they’d be approached or approach someone about a deal this year and 39 percent said they’d get at least one done.”

Which one? With whom? Can’t wait to see how many folks actually follow through on such hawkish sentiments.