COVID-19 BUSINESS RESOURCES (SPONSORED)
We are in a global pandemic. Life has changed.
Some businesses are being hit hard.
When life and business get turned upside down, it's natural to go into "hunker down" mode. It's understandable to want to cut all expenses and anticipate the worst. None of us should feel bad about these very valid (and sometimes practical) reactions.
We don't know what the future holds and there are so many things out of our control right now. However, I'd like to offer an argument that marketing is not one of the things that should be suspended right now. In fact, there are many reasons why marketing should continue or even accrue more resources.
While some companies' first instinct may be to cut costs to marketing, there are several reasons why that should NOT be the case. Not only does marketing need to continue, but it also needs to be amped up and strategically pivoted. While shifting your business’s focus may be scary, it’s necessary to survive this economic crisis.
Here we'll discuss some reasons why you should keep marketing efforts rolling through this pandemic and how you can evolve your company's efforts to effectively service your customers.
People are on social media now more than ever.
A recent study pointed to a sharp rise in social media site usage right now. It makes sense because just about everyone is now working from home or shut down, and spending a lot more time following current events.
On a normal day, there are over 279 million Americans online spending an average of 144 minutes per day surfing the web and posting on social media apps. More people are on social media trying to interact with their clients and audience, and those that may have downtime are spending it on the web. Social distancing is transitioning daily activities to digital life, so increasing your digital marketing efforts, not decreasing, is a good way to continue to bring revenue to your business.
If you run creative digital marketing campaigns on social media, now may be a great time to double down. Attention is in high supply and the competition may be pushing pause, giving you a unique opportunity to garner more attention.
In particular, the leading platforms like Facebook and Instagram are likely to be incredibly high-value as people follow breaking stories and argue about politics (Facebook), while sharing inspiration and life stories (Instagram). Facebook is offering $100M in cash grants and ad credits to help during this challenging time. In addition, Google is also offering grants for small businesses towards ad spend. Click here to learn more.
Building an email marketing list may be easier than ever right now.
People everywhere are looking for hope and inspiration. They are looking forward to the day when they can socialize again and see life get back to normal. Now is the time to create content that inspires and helps.
Whether you're in B2B or B2C or both, the classic tenets of Inbound Marketing have not changed: provide value.
Now may be the time to change your marketing strategy and launch that online marketing offer, email newsletter, podcast, download, video series, webinar, or pillar page that helps your audience navigate their challenges. Now may also be a great time to use content to build your email addresses, your social media custom audiences, your podcast subscribers, your video followers, and any channel that you are building a community around.
Small business owners in both B2B and B2C are looking for hope and guidance. Be part of the solution and provide help to them and when everyone is bursting out of this crisis and moving full-steam ahead in business, you will have been part of the solution all along. That gives you the social and business currency to turn that loyalty into revenue.
Marketing is not a switch; it's an engine.
In times of turbulence, it's tempting to think of marketing as a switch that can be turned on and off. That's not how it works.
Marketing is an engine that starts slowly and then builds momentum as you speed it up. The more you add fuel and the more momentum you gain, the faster and more effective it is.
Marketing can't just be turned on and suddenly leads and conversions pour in. It's a long road with twists and turns that lead you to your destination. Dropping marketing efforts turns that car around immediately, reversing all efforts to obtain leads and increase sales. This pandemic is creating new behavioral patterns for your customers and your business needs to consider how it can adjust into the future. Now is the perfect time to develop a marketing plan that implements the standards of a “new” normal.
If you suddenly grind it to a halt, you have to start over by building momentum again. You may have to re-earn loyalty from your audience if they haven't heard from you in a while. You may have to re-gain SEO (or search engine optimization) rankings because the competition kept going.
Rather than halting marketing, you are likely better off maintaining or even increasing your efforts so you are running strong when the storm passes.
Businesses are reinventing themselves.
While some local businesses are unfortunately struggling, others are reinventing themselves. From restaurants to breweries to retail, many B2C businesses are pivoting in response to the Coronavirus in creative ways. B2B companies are less affected, and in some ways, they are thriving (take Zoom for example). Many industries, especially technology, are experiencing unprecedented demand.
How can your business serve the local community in the current environment? What can you do to pivot and adapt your message? Yes, there is some negative news out there. However, there are also some amazing opportunities to create some very effective marketing.
A recession is a time to increase market share.
No one likes saying the word out loud, but it's pretty much been accepted that we are going to see a recession. We don't know how long (or short) it will be, but it is likely. When this occurs, your competition is likely to cut back. This is your chance to gain ground.
It's been well-documented that increased spending in marketing and advertising during a recession can pay off. From Forbes:
"...there have been a number of studies going back nearly one century that point out the advantages of maintaining their marketing or even increasing ad budgets during a weaker economy. Those advertisers that maintained or grew their ad spending increased sales and market share during the recession and afterward."
The article continues:
There are several reasons to advertise during a slowdown.
- The “noise level” in a brand’s product category can drop when competitors cut back on their ad spend. It also allows advertisers to reposition a brand or introduce a new product.
- Brands can project to consumers the image of corporate stability during challenging times.
- The cost of advertising drops during recessions. The lower rates create a “buyer’s market” for brands. Studies have shown that direct mail advertising, which can provide greater short-term sales growth, increases during a recession.
- When marketers cut back on their ad spending, the brand loses its “share of mind” with consumers, with the potential of losing current – and possibly future – sales. An increase in “share of voice” typically leads to an increase in “share of the market.” An increase in market share results, with an increase in profits.
Many well-known companies like Kellogg's and Amazon became the uncontested leaders in their space by increasing marketing strategy tactics during recessions. And they're basically unstoppable now.
Get Free Resources
To aid during this pandemic, ThrivePOP will be offering select marketing services absolutely FREE to any business who may need assistance getting their messages out regarding COVID-19.
Free Services include:
- Curated Press Releases
- Social Media Statements Regarding COVID-19
- Free Brainstorming Session Consultations
- Free Marketing Templates
- Free Ebooks
- Local Resources
Here at ThrivePOP, we want to make sure that your business can survive the rocky road ahead. Head over to our resources page to make use of our many free marketing tools, or contact us today to get customized assistance. Due to the economic impact, we will be discounting new projects during this time.
Get help now at the link below:
If you need help figuring out what direction to try, contact us at 844.822.5016 or [email protected]