Four Ways to Adapt Your Marketing Strategy During COVID-19
As much as I’ve tried to avoid writing my blog on anything relating to COVID-19, here we are. I struggled at first with knowing what advice I could give that was helpful and not wanting to dwell on what’s going on. Then I realized somewhere along the way that the things we’ve been doing every day for our clients for the last month are real life “how to adapt your marketing strategy during unusual times” tips. So, based on what I’ve been doing and seeing over the last month, here are 4 ways to adapt your marketing strategy for these uncertain times.
My biggest word of advice to businesses right now is do NOT just disappear. I know your first natural reaction is to pull all of your budgets and wait it out to see what happens, but the truth is, none of us know what is going to happen. But what you don’t want to happen is for people to look back on this situation and have your customers think “where was ‘so and so’ during all of this?” People are looking for companies to rally behind right now. They are looking for ways to help their community, whether it’s by donating clothes or food, ordering food to-go, or purchasing masks from a local vendor. If, as a business, you are doing something to help your community, then people want to support you now, and will most likely look back on what you did during these hard times and want to support you later too.
Shift Your Paid Strategy
Instead of disappearing, look at your paid strategy and what shifts you can make. This has been a huge part of what we at Texas Creative have been working on with our clients over the last few weeks. Where is your audience? Are they working from home? Are they still traveling to work? When are they traveling to work? Where are they consuming their media? Is it on TV? Streaming? Radio? Mobile? Podcasts? And then get even more targeted. When are they watching/listening? What stations? What channels? Take your existing buy and pivot it to where your audience is now.
Shift Your Messaging
Now that you know you’re reaching your target, look at your messaging. It’s important to find a balance between “selling” and “depressing”; empathetic is a good word. No one wants to be “sold” to right now, but they also don’t want to be reminded of the unfortunate situation we’re in. So talk to them, be realistic with them, but give them something that’s going to help them during these times. This balance needs to be achieved through the words you are saying, how you are saying them, and even the background music you are using. Make sure you are highlighting how your brand can help support or enhance people’s lives right now. If you’re an essential business, communicate how you’ve shifted your business model during this time to make it easy and safe for people to still do these essential things.
Along the lines of not disappearing, you want to stay connected with your customers. Whether it’s through your social media or email marketing, keep the conversation going with your customers, let them know you’re still here. At Texas Creative, we’ve shifted our quarterly newsletters to weekly newsletters that offer advice and examples of what we’re doing as an agency to help our clients through these sensitive times. What you say doesn’t have to be earth-shattering or the latest and greatest, your customers just want to know you’re still there.
Remember, the quarantine won’t last forever, and as cliche as it sounds, we really are all in this together. If you’re a company struggling with not knowing how to pivot during these sensitive times, feel free to reach out to us at Texas Creative. We are more than happy to help guide you. Or, if you have more tips or thoughts about what your company is doing, please feel free to share them in the comments. Stay safe and healthy everyone!