Many marketing companies are taking advantage of the economic turmoil facing the United States: “In the earlier part of this year, beginning in the second quarter, some clients saw this as an opportunity to gain share of mind and share of wallet, and really went on a much more progressive program in terms of communications.” One of those clients is Knight Capital Group, a capital markets trading firm, which brought out new executions of its campaign “The Science of Trading. The Standard of Trust.” “We stayed the course. We did not cut budgets, and we did not change our strategy,” said Marge Wyrwas, senior managing director-communications, marketing and investor relations at Knight Capital. “Even though the economy and the financial services industry were in disarray, the situation created an interesting opportunity for us to further stress our leadership role.” We couldn’t agree more. The best time to market yourself is when your competitors are licking their wounds. Pounce on the opportunity first. Still, we understand your hesitation. In a bad economy, the first thing that companies do — and rightly so — is to cut costs. You have less control over sales, but you have complete control over every dollar you spend. But this mentality ignores one fact of the Internet-based world: Marketing has never been cheaper. It costs nothing to send an update to Facebook, open a Twitter account, or write a few blog posts. Marketing departments are usually the first to face the axe in a recession because it is hard for them to prove their value to the company with quantitative metrics. But cutting Marketing merely starts a downward spiral affecting sales, hurting revenue, and damaging net profit in the long-term. When the economic chips are down, that is the best time to increase your marketing — in an Internet-driven world, the cost is cheap while the benefit is enormous.