Have you stopped all your marketing during coronavirus? Worried about saying the wrong thing or unsure if you can afford the cost? If so, then you might want to rethink. Now is not the time to let fear, anger or frustration stop you from doing what’s best for your business.
There is no denying that things are tough for many businesses right now. We’re facing a global crisis. This event is impacting millions of people, across every country. Even while Australia tentatively embraces positive news, we look at ongoing disasters that are happening across the globe and hold our breath as we wait to see what is still around the corner. Times are uncertain, and they remain uncertain for some time.
Why are Businesses Pulling Back On Marketing?
When there is uncertainty, people tend to pull back. We retreat to the comfort and safety of meeting basic needs.
For businesses, one of the first things to go is often the marketing strategy. Unfortunately, especially for businesses that can still operate, ignoring your marketing strategy now will only make things worse.
Even businesses that are required to shut their doors can actually benefit from an appropriately tailored marketing strategy that they can either use now, or have ready to launch when they’re able to.
Why Should Businesses Continue Marketing?
There is currently a more cost effective share of voice available while the majors slowly adapt their new strategies. If you can keep your marketing going, you have a good opportunity to increase your marketing ROI.
This isn’t the first time that the world has gone through a major economic crisis, and it won’t be the last time. That’s why we know that there’s a difference between making a cautious decision and reacting out of fear. What we’ve learnt from previous recession experiences is that the need to keep on your marketing strategy isn’t just an opinion. There are literally hundreds of experts and research studies warning business owners not to turn off their marketing. See here, and here, and here, for example.
This doesn’t mean you can just stick to your old plan. Things have changed, and while life is uncertain, they will continue to change rapidly. Monitor, tweak, adjust and overhaul your strategy as needs be. Don’t just stick to a strategy that’s not appropriate for the current season, but don’t make a worse mistake by stopping altogether.
Here are 7 simple reasons to keep on marketing through coronavirus and recessions:
1 - Marketing is a long term plan
With any long term plan, there can be lulls and peaks. Pulling the plug on marketing altogether during a lull, even a significant one, will increase your risk. You’ve put in time and money into growing your business with a long-term marketing strategy. Instead of letting that strategy crash and burn, monitor and adapt it so that you can keep on moving.
Your business may be able to pick up now, or you may be waiting a while to really see an upturn in sales. Either way, an effective ongoing marketing strategy is essential. This includes working out when, and how, you can get the best marketing ROI.
2 - Stopping your marketing means stopping your pipeline
Even if your business is severely limited in what it can sell or how you can sell, you still have people funneling through your pipeline, and you can still make sales in some capacity, even if your sales process has changed. Slamming the brakes on your marketing will kick people out of your sales funnels, instead of just slowing down the process.
You still want consumers to be developing an awareness of your brand. Then you want people who are just aware of you to be moving on to interacting with your business. With the right interactions you can continue to move people on to being interested in your products or services. While you might need to adjust your timeframes as consumers themselves wait out the uncertainty, there is still opportunity to then move the interested consumers into taking that final step and becoming customers.
By adapting your marketing strategy with the right content, and targeting, you can ensure you’re continuing to move people down to the sales level where you are achieving real ROI for your marketing spend. You still want to be making sales, if you can.
3 - If you're not there, your competitors will become the ones present in your market's minds
If your business is not the one that is actively present in the mind of your target audience, you can be sure a competitor is fostering a new relationship with your customer. The businesses that continue to put their hand up and remind people that they are here and ready to serve, the ones that interact and continue building relationships, and the ones that are showing the audience that they are seeing these times through with them, are the ones that consumers will remember. With many of the major advertisers slowly re-adapting their approach to the new market, a larger and more cost effective share of voice is available to you now.
By ignoring your marketing strategy you are closing the door of your business yourself. No marketing presence means no income. This is exactly why a good marketing strategy is an investment, not just a cost.
4 - There is currently less noise to compete with
As we’ve already touched on, many businesses, both big and small, are cutting back on advertising at the moment. Big businesses are regrouping and investing extensive time and money in adjusting their strategy. Small businesses are often worried about expenses or cutting back because they are afraid that they won’t be able to make any sales, or that they’ll send out the wrong message. This means that overall noise level is currently reduced. But it won’t stay that way for too long.
Most businesses don’t need to stop, they just need to adapt, and they need to be more sensitive and aware with their message.
Act quickly, and you have a better chance at getting your message heard right now by the people who need to hear it. Just make sure you’ve got the content right and you are targeting the right audience.
5 - Changing your marketing focus will bring in more revenue, while cutting your marketing spend will just reduce some costs
The whole reason you spend money on marketing is to make more money.
If you are slashing your marketing spend in order to save on costs, then you are also slashing your opportunity to bring in more revenue.
Now is a good time to get a good marketing ROI because there is less noise, there are discount opportunities, and there is a bigger than ever market online.
It’s a mistake to just think about cost cutting. Remember why you have a marketing strategy in the first place. You’re running a business, and your marketing strategy helps ensure you can keep running it.
6 - Getting ready for when you can reopen
Even if you really, genuinely can’t afford to advertise right now, you need to be prepared for when the dust settles. Having a marketing strategy that is ready to launch as soon as your business can reopen will help ensure you have a leg up when you can get moving and get back into the swing of things. Take advantage of the lowest ever entry price points and be prepared.
7 - The crisis will end
We don’t know how long shutdowns will last or how things will progress as restrictions are eased. There may be periods of flux as restrictions are eased, retightened, and eased again. It may be over in a month or it may continue for a couple of years in some form. But it will end. If you wait until the crisis is over you will be scrambling to keep up with more prepared competitors.
When the crisis ends you want to ensure your business has stayed the course and is ready to thrive. Your business will be in the best place to do this if it has continued to be present for the market, interacted and engaged with consumers, and piqued their interest. This may mean developing a group of consumers who are keen to support your business specifically, or it may mean providing products that consumers are eager to buy once they are able to. There are many different ways that you can continue to develop and build your brand’s presence even if you are limited in the sales you can make. Part of your marketing strategy is finding the right way for your business to remain present.
Whatever approach is suitable for your business, it is one that needs to ensure you are ready for things to get to a level of normal again. Even if that normal looks a little different to pre-COVID19 normal.
Get The Right Marketing Strategy Sorted Out Today For Free
Marketing is essential. This means your marketing strategy is an investment that you should aim to always keep running. With the right content, aimed at the right audience, at the right time, you will generate solid marketing ROI.
Don’t let fear drive your business under. When you realise that a good marketing strategy really is an essential component to ensuring your business survives, you realise that cutting your marketing out should be avoided, at almost all costs.
Even if cancelling your marketing can’t be avoided, there are still opportunities to be prepared. Now is the time to take advantage of the free help and support that many organisations are offering to ensure you are prepared and ready to get your business running again.
Be prepared. Contact 500 Digital to claim your free, no obligation, social media strategy.
You’ll find out how to:
- Use the daily insights Facebook are giving us for businesses to adapt their marketing strategies online
- Reach more customers on line and deliver your message straight to their handheld device
- Funnel and nurture cold traffic into people hungry to buy
- Boost your conversions without spending anything extra on traffic
And after the session you’ll get a free social media funnel that will show you exactly what you need to do to convert cold traffic into highly engaged traffic and sales.
500 Digital Media is a Melbourne-based production studio with a national focus. Fluent in every stage of production – from concept and creation to social media strategy – we provide a full-scale and integrated end-to-end service delivered by our team of in-house experts.