A Marketer’s Guide to Navigating the Post-Covid19 World

  • Apr 15, 2020

  • by Saurabh Kumar

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A Marketer’s Guide to Navigating the Post-Covid19 World

The coronavirus outbreak has had a significant impact on the world market. And, amidst grave uncertainty and calls for social distancing, it is not surprising that the consumer behaviour has undergone several changes.

The coronavirus outbreak has changed consumer behavior and hence, the way consumers interact with brands in an unprecedented manner. With the nation-wide lockdown, consumers are forced to stay indoors and so, they are unable to go out and make purchases. Due to this, the overall demand has taken a plunge. While most industries have witnessed revenue drops, some sectors dealing in essential goods, healthcare services and media have seen revenue growth, at least in the short run.

It is important to note that the effects of such global crises are seldom short-term.

Like other global crises in the past, the pandemic will not just alter things until the virus is under control but may also act as a catalyst for more permanent changes thereafter. In other words, while the economic activities may resume in a few months, the consumers may emerge from the crisis with different priorities and values. For example, it is very likely that using the internet more for shopping, gaming, and keeping in touch will have become a habit for many of us.

So, what does this mean for a marketer like you?

Short-run and long-run marketing challenges

Marketers across the board are faced with four major challenges in the short-run –

  1. Failure to host events or showcase billboards due to lockdown.
  2. Failure to make a switch from traditional marketing channels to alternative marketing channels with agility.
  3. Failure to conceive the permanence and the breadth of changes in consumer behaviour.
  4. Decreased returns on marketing investments due to low demand.

These will be followed by longer-lasting challenges like unforeseen behavioural, cultural, economical and global policy alterations.

But, what are other marketers doing and more importantly, what can you do?

Overcoming challenges - digital marketing paves the way

As most traditional forms of marketing have become impossible or pointless, a lot of marketers are left with enormous marketing budgets but with no suitable means to invest in. While for most B2C brands it is because their customers are not viewing their billboards, for B2B brands it is largely due to cancellation of trade shows. Regardless of whether a brand is B2B or B2C, their marketers are increasingly relying on digital marketing to meet their customers where they are – their homes.

For example, the results of a poll, featured on Marketing Charts, demonstrates where marketers are likely to reinvest the budget set aside for one of the worst-affected B2B channels - trade shows.

Turning to digital marketing is, in fact, something that you must consider. The investment-light digital media platforms will help you effectively engage with your customers without pulling down your ROI. Further, since digital marketing allows you to track your audience’s behavior closely, it is likely to provide you with tons of data and insights into how your target audience is changing. This will not just help you adapt your marketing practices with agility, but will also guide your long-term marketing strategy in a post-pandemic world.

How to leverage various digital marketing channels

Email Marketing:

Emails are the cheapest and one of the most efficient options available to most marketers. Emails can help you communicate how you have been dealing with coronavirus and how concerned you are about your customers.

Here are some good themes you can explore:

  1. How you are ensuring that your employees and people around you are safe
  2. Have there been any changes in your operations
  3. Notifications on event cancellations or offline alternatives you are going for
  4. What they can expect from you in the coming days.

While talking about coronavirus in a sensitive way can help you gain your customer’s trust, which will reap you benefits after things get better, using coronavirus and sending opportunistic communications can hugely misfire. In case you are providing any offers during this time, refrain from coupon codes like ‘COVID19’ or ‘coronavirus’.

Search Engine Optimization:

Working on your SEO will help you remain visible to any potential customer who looks for your offering on search platforms. Working on your SEO, together with your website’s Conversion Rate Optimization, will help you drastically improve your online conversions. Additionally, if you are a brand with multiple stores, then do not forget to work on your local search as it can have a direct impact on conversion-led actions such as calls, lead form fill-ups, and website clicks. The coronavirus impact on digital marketing has led digital marketers to recognize the potential of local search. The success of local search stems from the fact that people who perform local searches (or nearby searches) are usually in a high buying mode. According to Think with Google, 28% of nearby searches result in a purchase. At a time when the demand has dipped, it is more important than ever to hold on to such high-potential leads by ensuring that you rank adequately on all the relevant local search platforms.

Social Media Marketing:

The coronavirus impact on digital marketing has perhaps unfolded most starkly on social media. Social media is now offering brands that have a marketing budget with new opportunities because traffic has grown and competition has reduced. As many small businesses have stopped their paid marketing campaigns, paid ads have become much much cheaper and are now generating a greater ROI.

According to Neil Patel’s analysis of a number of brands, the ROI has on an average increased by 71%.

In case you haven’t given paid ads on social media a shot, you must consider it now.

Content Marketing:

This may be a time when people are not investing in consumption, but on the other hand, it is also a time when people are greatly investing in themselves. Producing a lot of educational and entertaining content will help you engage your customers and gain their trust. In fact, according to research by Conductor, consumers are 131% more likely to buy from a brand immediately after they consume education content from it. Use this time to create quality content in diverse forms like videos, podcasts, playbooks, blogs, webinars and research studies. Besides, these content collaterals can also be used for enhancing your SEO, social media engagement, email marketing campaigns and online lead collection efforts.

Conclusion

It is important to note that this is not the time to put a stop to your marketing efforts, but a time to significantly increase your efforts by making some key strategy changes. It makes a lot of sense for marketers to reinvest their marketing budgets in digital marketing, follow closely the digital marketing trends of 2020, and push out communication that is tailored to and sensitive towards a post-coronavirus world. This will help you immensely in gaining the confidence of your customer base and staying on the top of their minds the next time they need your service.

In case you are looking for a way to navigate digital marketing during coronavirus outbreak and need support, contact us and we will help you prepare for the challenging times that lie ahead.

Would you like to work with us? Get in touch.

About author

Saurabh Kumar
  • Saurabh Kumar

A marketing enthusiast with a fascination for technology, an interest in tinkering with data and systems, and 4+ years of experience at ebookers, Saurabh Kumar co-founded Envigo, a digital marketing agency, in the year 2007. His passion for Digital Marketing led him to launch a data-driven digital marketing solutions agency.

View posts by Saurabh Kumar

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