MARKETING YOUR BUSINESS DURING COVID-19, THE CORONAVIRUS
As a business owner, COVID-19 is an unprecedented situation and only adds to the daily pressures of running a business. Here are some tips on what you can do in order to protect your brand, your business and staff while still providing value with your marketing during COVID-19. Do what you can now to come out ahead when life gets back to normal.
Don’t Panic. The worst thing you can do a time like this is panic, it will lead to emotional decisions that can have detrimental impact on your business, such as stopping all advertising. Rather, take a step back, work with your team and discuss ideas. Communication is key to get through a time like this. There are things you can be doing that cost very little money or none at all but will have impact.
Evaluate Your Current Marketing
Where are you spending money currently? Analyze where you can pull back and where you can keep marketing. To be strategic you need to identify where your audience is, what they’re doing and maximize exposure while reducing expense. Essentially, you’re looking to get the “best bang for your buck”. Radio or outdoor advertising may not be best, you should be looking towards digital marketing as people spend more time indoors.
Get Creative During COVID-19
Creativity always wins. Look at this as an opportunity to create some great content that is relevant to everyone’s current situation. The more engagement you can garner now, the better you’ll be when we come out of this.
If you’re unable to see people in person, are you able to do virtual consults, walk through’s, estimates, online training’s, meetings, etc.
People are at home; they will get restless and need something out of the ordinary. How can you tie a contest or giveaway into their current daily life? What can you do to entertain them but provide future value for your business?
If you’re considered an “essential business” what can you do to comfort and help those that need your product or service? How can you go the extra mile to convenience them?
If you’re not involved with Social Media, get on social media. This is where people are. This is where people are looking for information. Start creating content, post often and engage with online groups such as Facebook Groups or Linkedin Groups. Social Media can be your greatest tool through this, whether you run ads, boost posts or post organically.
Browse social media and engage with others that are posting, keep the conversation going so you’re top of mind when we come out the other end. Start the conversation.
Use Your Database
Your database is key, whether that be on social media, email marketing or texting. Let them know what you’re doing, how you’re doing your part and updates about your business. Spend time with those that are already familiar with your business rather than chasing new business. Those that have done business with you, are more apt to support you than someone who knows nothing about you.
WHERE YOU CAN MAXIMIZE EXPOSURE
Social Media (ads, boosted posts, organic postings, start conversations)
Email (whether direct email or email marketing to your existing database)
Display Advertising (look at local media websites, the will get a lot of attention now)
Your Website (enhance or work on elements of your website that will engage users)
Create Content (if relevant for the time, submit to local media. Post on your website and social channels)
It’s important to understand that we will come out of this situation, we just need to get through it. While in the thick of it, we need to be “fluid” to have the ability to try new things and if they aren’t working, make quick adjustments. Take the time to evaluate and determine where your time and money is best spent. Certainly, use common sense and invest your marketing budget wisely.
The conversations I have with our clients is about where your time and energy is best spent. We’re moving or reducing budgets in SEM and traditional media and moving more towards online media and social media advertising.
If I leave you with anything, the most important thing you can do at this time is provide value. Do Not put something together that is going to make you look opportunistic. Consumers will see this and backlash will be swift.
If you’re operating during COVID-19, look to the CDC Resources for Businesses