SMPS Chicago April Program - Marketing at Low Tide: How to Recession-Proof Your Marketing Department

April 14, 2021
12:00 PM - 1:15 PM

Zoom (Virtual Meeting)

In 2020, the longest period of economic expansion in U.S. history came to a grinding halt. Caught off guard by years of growth and record-breaking profits, architecture, engineering, and construction firms (known collectively as the A/E/C Industry) are now reeling and wondering how long the recession will last and how severe the financial impacts will be.

During the Great Recession of 2008-2010, many A/E/C firms made deep, devastating cuts into their Marketing departments. These ‘cost-saving’ measures caused waves of layoffs of marketing professionals across all job categories and levels of seniority. This type of extreme ‘disinvestment’ in marketing resources hinders a firm’s ability to position its brand in the hyper-competitive landscape of a recession. To prevent this from happening again, we must understand the motivations and perceptions that drive firm financial decisions, and review some of the miss-steps marketing departments make when the tide goes out.


Learning Objectives

  • Learn how Recession impacts the A/E/C Industry
  • Explore ‘firm psychology’ and how it impacts Marketing departments
  • Review four recession action steps to take immediately
  • Review the 10 Activities Marketing Departments Should Do Every Year to improve agility and strengthen team commitment and morale

Suggested Audience
General Audience. Especially helpful for Directors and Managers, but there is something here for everyone, including entry-level.

How to Join the Program

The Zoom access information is located in your event registration confirmation email. Please save this information to your calendar.

  • Please make sure to add SMPS Chicago emails to your approved senders list and verify your email with SMPS Chicago.

About Our Speaker

Allison Tivnon, Pursuit Strategist at Middle of Six 

Allison Tivnon joined the A/E/C industry in 2008. She has dedicated her career to city and regional planning—partnering with Cities, Counties, regional governments, DOTs, and others on behalf of urban planners, transportation engineers, economists, and policy analysts. She started her career as a proposal coordinator and worked her way up to Marketing Director and Partner. Allison has presented Marketing at Low Tide: How to Recession-Proof Your Marketing Department at events, conferences, and in webinars for the Society of Marketing Professional Services (SMPS) and the American Council of Engineering Companies (ACEC). In 2019, she was awarded the Influential Marketing Leader of the Year award by the Oregon chapter of SMPS. In January of 2021, Allison joined Middle of Six, an A/E/C marketing consultancy. She serves as a Pursuit Strategist for clients throughout the industry. Allison also recently won election to the City Council in Beaverton, Oregon. She took office in January, 2021.

"Marketing at Low Tide: How to Recession-Proof Your Marketing Department" is now available as a trade paperback book—taking a deeper dive into each of the topics discussed in the presentation—and is available on Amazon, via major book retailers, and at

Connect with Allison on LinkedIn:

A recording of this session will be emailed following the live stream.

CPSM CEU Credits: 1

This is a Programs event.


$20.00 Members

$30.00 Non-members

$20.00 Out of State SMPS Members