As we face unprecedented times with the outbreak of COVID-19, we’re all adapting and adjusting to change—whether personally or professionally.
During this time of uncertainty, however, it’s important that businesses set the tone for how customers see their brand. When it comes to communication, including marketing efforts, finding the right message to address your audience in this crisis situation is challenging, yet necessary.
To minimize the potential revenue impacts of this exceptional event that’s taking place globally, you need to plan your marketing moves carefully.
We wanted to share our research with you on how this is affecting the marketing sector, and what strategies to implement to power through the challenges ahead.
How Will the Coronavirus Impact the Marketing Industry?
The next few weeks and months will present a multitude of shifts, transitions and even opportunities in the world of marketing.
Online marketing is expected to increase in various forms such as social media and digital ad spend. People are turning to brands for guidance, which is allowing companies to have a more open and trusting conversation with their target audiences around topics like health and safety.
Our advice? Focus on getting more visibility in front of your market, working smartly to drive conversions, and equally as important, be proactive in retaining your existing customer base.
Here are a few tips on how to do that.
Marketing Strategies to Implement
1. Social Media Ad Spend
Social media will fill the void in people’s daily routines as they look to their phone to keep busy, stay on top of the news and tap into this sense of community.
Advertising on social media can help get your brand in front of more customers. According to the The Drum, social media spending is expected to rise by 22.2% as a result of coronavirus.
With many platforms requiring a low minimum daily budget, businesses leverage paid social because it uses machine learning to find, target and reach their specific audiences. That means your ads will show up in people’s feeds, including on mobile devices.
Head over here to learn about social media advertising costs in 2020.
This guide shows you how to create a social media ad and offers examples: The Ultimate Guide to Mastering the Basics of Effective Social Media Advertising
2. Social Media Channels
Another way to harness the power of social media during this global health crisis is by engaging your audience thoughtfully.
Be personable and positive; share posts about how, for example, your team is taking on remote work challenges or fun photos of your video conferences. Showing your human side can help people feel connected, especially considering that we’re all in this together.
Important: Be sure to re-evaluate what you already have pre-scheduled in your social media pipeline and pause any content or campaigns that may seem inappropriate at the moment. It’s a good idea to tailor future messaging to better address these sensitive times.
You can send proactive messages by email to your contact list of existing customers and leads. Take the time to answer common questions about your company’s response to the situation and reassure them of your commitment to support them to the best of your ability.
If you sell a product or service that is well-suited for these challenging times such as technology that enables remote workforces, craft your messaging carefully so as not to be seen as taking advantage of the situation.
4. Live Chat or Chatbots
Service-based businesses—especially SMBs—can relieve their customer support staff with a chatbot (or virtual assistant) during a time when they may be inundated with calls specific to this situation.
A chatbot can drastically reduce wait time or helpdesk tickets and improve customer engagement. We recently published this blog article about how to create a cohesive chatbot conversation flow if you need help to get started with that.
Conclusion: Focus on Strengthening Relationships
In the face of challenges brought on by COVID-19, businesses need to make more tactical decisions about their marketing—even adjust messaging to keep customers aligned with their brand and maintain trust.
Keeping relationships alive and fostering a sense of community with your audience during these uncertain times is a positive way to add value to the world.
We wish everyone the best as we work together in solidarity to overcome this temporary setback.