During a world-wide crisis such as what we’re going through with COVID-19, it’s understandable that the first instinct for many businesses may be to pull marketing efforts and advertising dollars. After all, your team is working remote, the economy is doing somersaults, and we don’t know when any of this will end.
But what’s important to remember is that while your marketing may, and should look different (See: Should Your Brand Pandemic Proof It’s Messaging) now is definitely not the time to pull back on all of your digital efforts. In fact, it may be the time to amplify them.
Digital is All We Have
In a normal world, businesses rely on a host of things for their sales and marketing efforts, often utilizing a mix of traditional advertising, digital advertising, face to face sales, events, and experiential marketing. But in our “new normal” businesses that might have once relied on in-store visits, conferences, or even word-of mouth to generate awareness and leads no longer have that luxury. Even direct sales calls have taken a different format. Today, the only real tools we are able to utilize are digital channels. The good news for us marketers is, that internet usage is up, about 50% making those channels even sweeter!
Channels are Less Competitive
While internet usage may be up, advertising has actually gone down across platforms (remember the uncertainty we talked about before). Businesses are nervous to spend money on things such as marketing when the future is so uncertain, but as Warren Buffet once said, “Be fearful when others are greedy, and greedy when others are fearful.” As that’s exactly what businesses should do. A decrease in advertising means less competition for you – an opportunity to swoop in on things you may have been hesitant to try before because competition was driving the price too high, or because you thought your message might get lost in a sea of other similar businesses vying for the same eyeballs. Adjust your messaging to resonate with the current climate and get out there and try it.
The Budget is There
It’s no mystery organizations are keeping a close eye on the numbers these days so you may be wondering where media spend at a time like this should come from. A decrease in spending on traditional mediums may be an obvious diversion to digital platforms, but what about things like conferences and events that will no longer be held or the budget that was allocated for sales team members to travel to meet with clients? Many organizations have a ‘use it or loose it’ mentality with year-over-year budgets, so with minimized ways to generate leads and sales, it’s worth taking another look at the numbers to see what a bit of extra marketing spend can help drum up.
People are Captive to Their Screens
Let’s face it, the sad truth is, people don’t really have anywhere else to go right now. From the moment they wake up they are hopping on the computer for work, scrolling on their phone during lunch and hitting the streaming services at night. We are now living in an entirely screen focused world without the distractions of school drop-off, restaurants, sports games, family gatherings, or running errands. Capitalize on the time you’ll be able to get in front of your audience when they have the least amount of distractions they’ll have for a while.
We’re all navigating this unprecedented time together, and while things sure do look different than a couple months ago, it’s important to remember how technology has made constant communication possible, not just for internal teams but to our audiences as well. With all of the changes across the economic landscape, the one place you can’t afford to not invest in right now, is the digital one.