Is marketing your business, an expense or an investment?

by admin on May 13, 2011

It’s May already and we’re counting down to the pointy end of the financial year…

Last week I visited my accountant for a pre-EOFY catchup and, as many businesses do, we looked at ways we can maximise our profit for next year; namely increasing our sales and cutting back on expenses.

One of my favourite soapbox topics is that since Marketing, Advertising and Promotion fall in the “Expenses” column on the ledger (along with pens, printer consumables and office coffee), many business owners see the marketing of their business as simply a cost – an expense – that they need to cut back on.

This riles me because, in my experience, strong branding and properly executed marketing activities actively drive new clients and more sales to a business, creating more income on the bottom line.

investment: [in-vest-muhnt] noun

the investing of money or capital in order to gain profitable returns, as interest, income, or appreciation in value.

(definition from

When we look at the definition of investment, it follows that focused marketing and branding activities are definitely investments not expenses!

There’s a whole separate argument about what constitutes “good” marketing (which encompasses branding, graphic design, advertising, strategy, online and social media, amongst others). For the time being, I just want you to consider your own thinking – is marketing just an expense, or a potential investment you’ve been ignoring? Have you been overlooking an opportunity for growth and improvement?

Over to you

What is your position on marketing in your business – do you find it a worthy investment? What marketing activities have had the most impact on increasing your sales?

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