It’s undeniable–the outbreak and corresponding uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 is affecting us all. Local schools, restaurants, gyms and more are closed, and many companies have instituted work from home precautions during this time. Business projections show that sales will most likely slow, but that doesn’t mean you should cut back on marketing. In fact, the digital marketing team at Duneland Media advises the opposite. An economic downturn is the PERFECT time to revitalize your marketing strategy, stay all in, and perhaps even market more aggressively, given you strategize differently. Read on to understand why we’re recommending our clients do the same.
Why You Should Market During a Downturn
The first thing we’d like to stress is to avoid capitalizing on the fear and panic so many people are feeling. All marketing, regardless of your industry, should continue to come from a place of integrity and compassion. We recommend thinking long-term and targeting your marketing for future growth. Anything else would be short-sighted and a likely waste of your time and money. Plus, it’s tacky and in bad taste. Dedicate your marketing resources to long-term growth (maybe increase your SEO spend for the time being or frame your services in a new way that will benefit customers during this tumultuous time–more on that below).
With that said, an economic downturn is prime time to maintain and even increase your marketing. Competitors will likely be cutting their spend, so you stand to make the most gain in the market if you forge ahead. You’ll just have to be savvy and creative in how you do it.
It’s probable that traditional digital marketing won’t be as effective as it has been. Organic traffic across most industries is already down. Tenuous employment and income has made shoppers more hesitant to buy. That doesn’t mean, however, that all spending will come to a halt. Rather, shoppers will be changing their habits and behaviors (more online shopping, ordering food to go, paying money for home services, finding activities and entertainment for children, etc.). It’s our job as a marketing agency to help you figure out how to meet those new behaviors with what your business offers.
Keep Calm and Market On
The second thing we’d like to advise, and probably the most important tip, is to stay calm. COVID-19 is a novel virus, yes, meaning we don’t have anything at this magnitude to reference. We can say with confidence, however, that panicking is never helpful. Rather than react without thinking and cancel your marketing, it’s time to be creative and strategic about how you market.
Think Strategically About How You Can Serve Your Customers
The team at Duneland Media is here to help business owners think proactively about their marketing. Consider the unique qualities about what you offer and how you provide services. Can you identify a current need in your community that you can fill?
Perhaps you can provide something in a new or surprising way. Could you offer curbside pick-up for your products? What about delivery? Unique business hours to serve the elderly or immunocompromised? Do you have a product idea that can help parents and their children have fun while learning? For example, a local baker is creating small cookie decorating kits available for pick-up from her home. She’s providing a creative activity for families to do together and giving clients a chance to support a small business!
Another idea could be to tap into the increased time people are spending on the internet. Perhaps you can remind your audience of something wise they can be doing now while they spend more time at home. Is now a great time to have an annual heating and cooling inspection? What about refinancing mortgage loans at the incredibly low rates, or analyzing life and home insurance coverage plans? Reminding your client base that you’re available and supportive during this time of uncertainty is a definite Do.
Stay Visible & Relevant AND Outbid Your Competitors
Many people will likely be spending more time scrolling social media feeds while they’re stuck at home. Your audience is captive, and you should capitalize on that. Make sure you’re in front of your followers with relevant information, visible support, and frequent posts. Perhaps provide discounts or incentives for people taking you up on your new offerings or ways of doing things. What’s more, the average cost per click has not increased, meaning your pay-per-click advertising can be just as, if not more, effective as it has been. If you increase your marketing budget, now is the time you might be able to make it to the top of page one on SERPs (search engine results pages).
Trust Duneland Media to Help You
No matter how your business has been or will be affected by the coronavirus, remember that effective marketing requires creativity. Duneland Media is here to help you strategize during this uncertain time. Call or email us today (firstname.lastname@example.org) to plan how you can market differently and wisely.