In this 6-minute read:
- Why you should keep marketing during COVID-19
- How to adapt your marketing strategy to the pandemic
- Additional marketing resources
During any major change to businesses, there’s often one huge thing that is overlooked: marketing. At the start of the coronavirus pandemic, many businesses needed ways to cut costs, and for a lot of them that meant cutting back on their marketing budgets.
Now that we are several months into this global pandemic, with no clear end in sight, it’s important to make sure that you do have sufficient marketing efforts to help you reach your audience.
Whether your business has to stay closed to the public, only allow limited people in its doors, or you can stay fully open and operate as (semi)normal, you can benefit from this guide.
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Why is marketing important during COVID-19?
Whether there is a global pandemic or not, you still have a business to run, and that business needs customers. Marketing is how you get your business out in front of new customers.
With COVID-19, you can’t decrease your marketing efforts. In fact, we’d argue that you may need to increase your efforts in order to adapt to current social behaviors and reach new customers.
Continuing your marketing efforts is going to help you in the long run, so don’t stop now. Here are some major benefits of marketing your business during COVID-19:
- Keep up with, or even get ahead of competition
- Learn more about your audience as you adapt your marketing to their behaviors
- Continue to grow your business relationships with current customers
- Set your business up for long-term success after the coronavirus
Ways to modify your marketing plan during COVID-19
You should have several of theses marketing efforts in place already, and we’re going to talk about how you can adapt them to meet the needs of your customers. Depending on your industry your needs may be a little different, but the basic principles of each of these methods will remain the same.
Re-emphasize the relevance of your offerings
Your current marketing efforts show customers why they need your product or service, but in light of the pandemic, has the relevance of your offering shifted? Adapt your marketing efforts to reflect the need for your product or service amidst the pandemic.
This might mean that you highlight a different product that is more relevant to current circumstances or adapt the way a service is done to meet the needs of your customers better during this time.
Figure out how you can make your offerings relevant to customers during this pandemic and market them that way.
Start doing more digital marketing
If you aren’t doing anything online with your marketing strategy, you should be (even before the pandemic hit). Digital marketing is more important than ever with people limiting the amount of time they are outside.
Focus on your website throughout all of these efforts and make it the hub of your digital marketing strategy. Keep your website up to date with all relevant information about your offerings and also any changes that may be taking place throughout the pandemic.
Communicate new information and changes you’ve made due to COVID-19
You’ve likely experienced changes in your business with everything that is going on, whether you’ve had to close your doors completely or really amp up your sanitation efforts. Either way, make sure that your customers (current and new alike) are updated with any changes that you make.
A list of places that you can update new changes:
- Your website: add a COVID-19 page to your website and keep that up-to-date with any new changes that take place
- Google My Business: update your hours and add your COVID-19 page to your Google My Business listing
- Blast out your changes, new procedures, new sales options, etc. on your social media channels
- Send out an email to all customers detailing your changes
Change up your email marketing campaign
Email marketing is a great way to build on your current customer relationships. For customers who haven’t made a purchase in while (likely due to the pandemic), you can send out an email that says something like “We haven’t seen you in a while! Here’s a coupon for a freebie when you make your next purchase.”
If you have an online store, invite your customers to shop with your through that avenue.
Get creative to determine the best ways to reach your current customer base through email marketing and encourage them to stick with you through these tough circumstances.
Get comfortable with social media marketing
People may not be at home all day like they were during the statewide shutdowns that took place near the beginning of the pandemic, but they are still on their mobile devices all the time.
Social media is a place where many people get their news and stay updated on current events. It’s how they connect with friends and family that they can’t meet up with in-person. Don’t take this for granted.
Make sure that you are on every social channel that your audience spends a significant amount of time on. Get familiar with how that platform works and start sharing content and advertising on that social media channel.
- Which social media site matters most for local businesses?
- The 14 best types of social media posts for small business
Include your customers
Adapting your marketing efforts is all about reaching your customers and meeting their needs. What a better way to learn than by including them in that conversation? Talk to your customers about what they would like to see from your business and how you can help them through these trying times.
Send out surveys to find out which of your offerings would be most beneficial to them and what their online shopping habits look like.
No one knows your customers better than your customers, so get them involved!
Show empathy and compassion
Lastly, be empathetic and show compassion towards your customers. We are all in this tough situation trying to make ends meet while keeping our friends and family safe.
Use your content marketing efforts to help show that you understand how your customers are feeling and that you want to help them in any way you can. And make sure that your team is all on the same page with compassionate understanding as they communicate directly with customers and potential customers.
Additional resources to help your marketing efforts
Whether your business is working remotely or not, these resources can help your business better manage your team and reach your target customers.
- Helpful tools to support your long-term remote workforce
- What marketing processes you can and should be automating
- Guide to starting your first marketing campaign
If you need assistance reaching your customers online, Womply has some tools that can help you too.
Womply Reputation Management allows you to easily manage your online reviews. You can monitor and respond to all of your customer reviews from all the important sites, all from your Womply dashboard.
We also offer automated email marketing services that allow you to maintain customer relationships with just a few clicks.