Maintain marketing spending. It is well documented that brands that increase (marketing) during a recession, when competitors are cutting back, can improve market share and return on investment at lower cost than during good economic times.
I can't tell you whether to cut your budget. However, public relations, marketing and advertising are the things that keep you and your business in the public view.
Often when I do marketing and public relations workshops designed for entrepreneurs, I remind them many times throughout the course of the day how important it is have visibility. One example I like to use is McDonald's.
There is seemingly a McDonald's drive through on nearly every corner around the globe. Each month you can peruse magazine racks at book stores and find at least a dozen ads for McDonald's. You can also find a McDonald's television commercial every day. And I would imagine the same is true of radio. And their community involvement with the Ronald McDonald charities also gives them high visibility.
I doubt that there's a human on earth that hasn't either eaten at McDonald's or at least seen one while driving or walking. So, if everybody knows that these restaurants exist — and, for sure, McDonald's success is real — why does the company bother to keep such a highly visible marketing, advertising and public relations campaign?
The answer is simple — executives know that without that consistent visibility the company would eventually become just another restaurant chain.