It’s understandable that COVID-19 has impacted businesses differently depending on their industry, structure and operations. If your business relies on footfall or customers visiting your location the likelihood is you’ve been hit hard by the impact of the lockdown. However, if you happen to sell hand sanitizer or benefit consumers during their time at home you may have seen an increase in demand and sales.
On a larger scale, however, it’s quite clear that COVID-19 has changed the way we all market our businesses. With some businesses stopping all of their marketing while others changing their message or how they speak to potential customers.
So how do you find out what’s the right approach to take for your business – and what can we expect the following months to look like for marketers?
What this means for conversions…
Conversions are down for many industries with real estate, travel and construction being those hit the hardest. As consumers are even more careful about their buying decisions with the impending doom of potential economic crisis which is expected to follow once things return to “normality”.
Overall, what consumers are looking for when making their purchasing decisions is reliability. Are they likely to receive their goods or service in exactly the same way as before the COVID-19 lockdown? Have you communicated the changes (if any) and is it likely to impact the consumer? Do you have the means to deliver in the same way as before the lockdown? These are essential questions you must ask to understand why their may be changes to your conversion rate.
Overall, the economy is likely to experience a financial crisis (similar to that of 2008) – but how we act now will determine which businesses survive through it. Remember that just like in 2008 things recover over time.
Paid ads are really cheap during COVID-19
We are currently seeing an unprecedented time to advertise on a digital platform. Depending on the industry, we’ve noticed a 75%* drop in average CPCs as businesses rush to cancel their digital campaigns.
However, ironically traffic on the web is up since people are required to stay home. The combination of this increase in web searches and fewer advertisers during the pandemic has resulted in ads being cheaper. Therefore we’re seeing PPC produce a much higher ROI than before COVID-19.
But it’s important to note that cheap ads aren’t guaranteed to increase your leads and sales. At this time your message is key as we said earlier consumers are looking for reliability & kindness in the companies they choose to do business with.
Do you appear to be in a position to help customers during the pandemic? Are you offering a personalised service for certain groups or individuals? Have you started offering payment plans to reduce the financial burden customers may face in the short term?
It’s important during times of hardship to appear to be offering some sort of support to customers which is why changing your key messaging to reflect this combined with cheap ads could be your road to success.
How has SEO changed with the pandemic?
As we’ve already seen, internet traffic is up during the lockdown and subsequent “stay at home” policy that was adopted. This has led people to have more free time to browse than ever before giving you an opportunity to increase your share within the market.
Often the challenge with SEO is trying to get your voice heard in an over-saturated market, however, as we’ve noticed this time is unlike anything we’ve seen in the digital world before.
Therefore, your business should be focusing on laying the ground work for your SEO strategy. If your industry is likely to recover once lockdown ends, focus on improving the visibility of certain services that people may not have had access to. Manage your expectations and realise that a short-term reduction in ROI may be counteracted by an increase in the second half of 2020.
It’s important to anticipate the future of your industry and how your competitors will react once the lockdown is lifted. If you can get ahead of them by utilising your time effectively during this “gap” there may be an opportunity to flourish.
Offering an educational service…
A good opportunity while on lockdown that many people are considering is learning something new. Consider maximising this opportunity to create leads by offering free educational based courses or a blog.
As unemployment soaring to an all-time high in such a short period of time, more people are looking for opportunities online.
With a big question mark over when educational institutions will be allowed to open their doors again this could be an opportunity to teach your audience something new. Remember that with more education about something comes more of an interest. Although this may or may not mean direct sales/leads it could be the start of a new service you begin to offer.
How to make content marketing work for you…
Content marketing is more valuable now than ever! Why is this the case? With less noise in the echo chamber of content marketing it’s easier to get your voice heard.
Social media and email marketing are essential for businesses to appear to be continuously communicating with their audience. As we said before, people are looking for reliance in the brands they support and what better way to convey this message than increasing your content marketing.
Content marketing is a relatively cost-effective and low budget to communicate with your audience. Remember to try and keep it positive as people are experiencing a difficult time during the lockdown this is essential to create a sense of unity during a time of physical separation.
It’s no doubt that this time is challenging for every business and it is impossible to predict what the marketing landscape will look like after the lock-down ends. But it’s essential to think about how you can use this time effectively for your business, whether you’re operating or not.