As a business owner, it’s important to be prepared for unexpected situations you may encounter. While you hope a crisis never occurs, it’s still in your best interest to have a plan in place.
Enter the COVID-19 pandemic. Whether your plans contemplated this type of situation or not, it’s not too late. In the face of rapid change, responding to this crisis constructively is vital.
And when it comes to your marketing, you can’t make quick decisions or adjustments too soon. Facing a crisis can be scary, but you need to remember to stay calm and evaluate the specific situation at hand.
To help you prepare, we wanted to share a few tips your business can consider putting into practice.
Don’t Stop Your Marketing Efforts
Regardless of the situation, you should never stop your marketing efforts when faced with a crisis.
Remember, crises are temporary. Just like any other obstacle, the challenge will subside over the course of time. The goal of a healthy business should be to build resilience as a result of the situation and emerge stronger.
In the digital world, improving your online presence takes time. If you halt your marketing efforts when a crisis arises, you will have to start from scratch when the time comes to start your marketing back up.
However, by taking a fresh look at your marketing efforts in the context of today’s reality, you can be a resource to your community, send only relevant communications and build trust with current – and future – customers.
Re-Evaluate Your Current Marketing Plan
Do your current marketing communications make sense in the context of today’s new reality? There are some companies whose marketing automation comes off as tone-deaf. This is a great opportunity to focus on what matters most right now to your audience and adjust your message accordingly.
In the long term, you want your brand to be authentic, and genuinely helpful to your customers. Times of rapid change are an invitation to take a fresh look at how and what you’re communicating, with concern and sensitivity to the people your business is here to serve.
Leverage Your Services
Depending on your industry, it’s likely that people are still looking for the products or services you offer.
For example, after a natural disaster, many homeowners will utilize contract businesses for any home repairs. This is the time your business should be focusing on marketing, as people will be searching for your type of business online. Being easily found online is an important element of your local presence.
During a crisis, you can rise to the occasion and be there when customers need you the most. However, don’t forget to be sympathetic to the situation and be sure to listen any concerns.
Think Outside the Box
Along the same lines of leveraging your business’s services, a crisis can help you think outside the box during a time of need.
Let’s take the restaurant industry, for example. Many times, people are always concerned about having access to food and water during a crisis. As a restaurant owner, you can take this one step further by helping your community with this need.
Perhaps you start offering a temporary delivery service or a discount on food. In today’s social media-driven world, be sure to make a social post about what your business is trying to do to help.
When consumers have a need, they will take advantage of any opportunity that’s given. Not only will this make you feel good as a business owner, but it shows your customers and community that you care about the situation – and about them.
A crisis can result in panic, but this shouldn’t paralyze your business if you have a plan in place! The best option is to stay calm, analyze the situation at hand and respond constructively.
Every situation will be different, so there will never be a one-size-fits-all solution.
Leveraging your services and continuing your digital marketing efforts will help your business respond appropriately during this, and any, challenging time.
If you have any questions or concerns about your digital marketing, our team at RevLocal is here to assist and provide guidance in any way we can.