How Businesses Can Use Digital Marketing to Weather COVID-19
Adam Heitzman, Co-Founder and Managing Partner
The world is currently in a state of confusion, panic, bewilderment, and uncertainty. How could we ever have predicted the situation in which we currently find ourselves? With the situation changing by the hour, it can leave you feeling lost and wondering what is going to come next.
If you run your own business, you are no doubt feeling anxious about what the future holds and how you are going to weather the storm that COVID-19 is unleashing on the world. Like many business owners, you may already have contingency processes in play that will help to protect your company and everything for which you have worked so hard. Perhaps you are busy scanning through your business insurance policy documents. Perhaps you are considering temporarily downscaling your business to save on costs. Maybe you have your sights on reducing your marketing spend until things pick up once more.
If you are considering the latter you are not alone, and on a service level it makes sense. With all the unknowns, most products and services are becoming more of a luxury than a necessity and it can be wasteful to spend what revenue you do have on customer acquisition.
However, companies that are able to weather this downturn and continue to strategically market to and communicate with their customers will come out much stronger and be posed for faster recovery once the tide shifts.
As a small business owner, I fully understand the difficulty of continuing to sell and market currently. But if history tells us anything it is that based on past outbreaks or recessions there is data that shares this view:
● In 2002, McKinsey published a study of 1,000 US companies during the early 90’s which included a recession and how the companies that came out ahead pressed their advantages.
● During the SARS outbreak, China’s economy tanked for a few months, but rebounded in subsequent quarters to register an annual growth rate of 10%.
As a Business Owner What Can You Be Doing?
Keep the Conversation Going
Everybody is feeling the impact of COVID-19. Communication is vital in situations like this and will keep your customers in the loop. However, this isn't the time for sales pitches. It's a time for empathy, understanding, and cooperation that will help your customers in a time of crisis. Not only will you be showing the altruistic side of your brand, but you may also build important connections and help your audience to feel less isolated. A simple update about how your business is operating during the outbreak or answering customer questions will ensure you keep everybody connected and informed. It's all great press for your business. See below from Buster’s Liquors: