The old adage of spending money to make money is as true in bad times as it is in good ones. ?
And while entertaining clients is one way to spend money, $100 sports tickets, nice meals and shows and concerts have put businesses in a tough spot.??
Bob Gerard, the Chief Marketing Officer of New Jersey-based Birdsall Services Group, said his public engineering and environmental consulting firm has cut 10% of its $400,000 entertaining and charity budget in the past year.?
Gerard suggests firms that have season tickets to a pro team buy less expensive tickets or buy fewer games and look for restaurants that may be less expensive than a four-star joint in a major city.?
Becoming a member of local business organization can help, too, because some offer members discounts to all kinds of events. The Newark Regional Business Partnership, for instance, offers half-priced tickets to New Jersey Devils hockey games. If a firm purchased eight $50 tickets for $25, it would save $200.??
In addition, groups such as the NRBP throws events where business people can meet each other instead of a more expensive private meeting over lunch or dinner.??
It’s being reflected in the U.S. restaurant business, too, as the industry expects its revenues to grow only a modest 1 percent--the slowest growth since record keeping began in 1970.??
Even giving to charities and local causes gets squeezed, according to Gerard. “The challenge facing companies today is to balance economic reality with the role of good, corporate citizens,” he said.