I was going to call it. To say that I’d spotted some definite green shoots of financial recovery.
But the Sunday Times and YouGov beat me to it. In yesterday’s paper (paywall, so data summary here) they revealed that in the UK the Feelgood Factor (thinking things will get better not worse) is at it’s highest point since the general election in 2010. Optimism is on the up.
From my point of view, I’ve been flat-out since January the 2nd. As has every other freelancer I know in the North of England, everyone I know in agencies across the UK and all of my suppliers.
Most of the agencies I work with are desperate for extra bums on office chairs, their clients are recruiting like crazy too and mothballed branding and research projects are suddenly being approved.
So I think it would be safe to say that at least the marketing industry is feeling rather optimistic at the moment.
However that’s B2B. In ConsumerLand this positivity doesn’t seem to have entirely trickled through yet. We’ve been planning a big refurb at home for the last year and visited around a dozen local independent bathroom and bedroom suppliers as part of our research. Four of them are no longer trading. Even the most popular local restaurants are less full than they’d like and the focus groups I run with Supermarket Mums tell me that they’re still watching every penny and anxious about what the future will bring.
But YouGov rarely get it wrong, so watch this space. On the other hand we could be simply seeing a blip, after all if we’re working on Robert Beckman’s predictions things aren’t supposed to get better until 2016…