How Can Marketing Help Your Business During the COVID-19 Pandemic?
The World Health Organization has declared the coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, a global pandemic. It is scary, uncertain times to all of us as we venture into the unknown since few answers exist concerning the virus, its treatment, etc. As a business owner, it is important that you approach COVID-19 with the health, safety, and protection of your customers, employees and yourself in mind.
The World Health Organization currently recommends the following approaches to prevention of COVID-19:
– No Handshakes: An elbow bump is an alternative to a handshake and the preferred method of contact the CDC recommends. Now is the time to enforce a strict no handshake policy throughout your company. Be vigilant about hygiene and proper handwashing during this time as well.
– Social Isolation: Stay at home! Even Walt Disney World, Las Vegas casinos and large corporations have closed doors and operations for a minimum of two weeks to prevent the spread of coronavirus.
– Hand Sanitization: If your store is still operating during the pandemic, keep hand sanitizer readily available for customer use. Offer a pick-up or drive-thru shopping option to prevent the spread of microorganisms that can spread the virus.
– Surgical Masks: The CDC recommends that people with compromised immune systems and elderly individuals age 60+ wear a medical-grade surgical mask any time they leave their home since it is these people who are most vulnerable to the virus.
– Disinfect: If budget allows, hire a professional team of disinfectant experts to come to clean up your building. If this isn’t a service the budget allows, ensure that you take proper measures to disinfect surfaces in the office such as desks and chairs, each day, after each shift.
The WHO recommends everyone isolate themselves for the next two weeks minimum. As a result, conventions, trade shows, and other important events are being rescheduled to TBD dates. Considering the importance that such events hold to a company, marketing is a top concern for many who may be unable to personally reach customers during the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. That’s where marketing comes into play. How can marketing help your business right now?
This pandemic affects the health of the public. Any such crisis also impacts the economy. Google reports that during the first week of February, coronavirus searches increased by +260%! People have responded to the information they’ve learned via searches, state officials, the President, and others, which has impacted businesses in significant ways. A toilet paper and hand sanitizer shortage across the United States is the first in history. Store shelves are bare and families wonder if they’ll have access to essential supplies such as baby formula, diapers, and pet food.
Content Marketing: Content is King
Bill Gates had no idea that we’d face a pandemic in 2020 back in the 1990s when he declared content is king, but the statement has held to be true year after year. It seems that content marketing is more important than ever since we’re all shut-in our homes during the COVID-19 pandemic!
One of the best marketing tactics your business can use right now is content marketing. Send an email alerting customers to your approach to the COVID-19 pandemic. Use it as a time to teach, inform and even sell your products. It is a beneficial time for any business offering products in the health/wellness genre, although any business can thrive when using the right approach.
Any information put out about COVID-19 should be accurate, factual information. Make sure your ad copy doesn’t make any claims of cures, preventions, vaccines or other treatments for the virus. Do not recommend or share information from anyone that makes such a suggestion, since this can considerably impact the credibility of your business.
Communicate With Your Customers
Effective communication is essential for businesses of all sizes as the COVID-19 pandemic continues. The world is in hysteria right now, scared of what if and what could be. Your business should not play on that fear via marketing efforts but instead comfort and reassure customers without making false claims or promises.
Content marketing helps develop long-term relationships with current and future customers. It can provide customers with relief during periods of uncertainty and stress. If your business is affected in ways that cause the closure to the store, content marketing online helps keep your business afloat and ensures that your customers’ needs are met.
Content marketing is more than simple blog posts. Today, content marketing uses a broad range of strategies and tactics to reach customers. These strategies include social media, blog posts, SEO, paid advertisements, emails, and others. Each tactic comes in handy more than ever as the world suffers through the crisis.
How Can You Help? Marketing During a Pandemic
Being stuck in the house is a challenge for any family, but one we are all faced with. Most people had little to no time to prepare for the pandemic, leaving them to deal with issues they never anticipated. Your business can strategize products and services that may alleviate some of those nuisances. No matter what industry or genre your business serves, there’s always a simple tactic that can help showcase your products beneficial during the social isolation period.
Accommodate customers by offering delivery service, if possible, as well as online shopping with expedited shipping options. Ensure a well-stocked inventory in case people want to stock up on the items that you offer. Don’t hesitate to offer special deals and discounts as well, especially if your business offers travel services or related products.
Some ads that you’ve prepared may no longer be relevant now that the COVID-19 pandemic has struck. Review all ads and remove any that aren’t relevant, ads that you’ve now pushed back, and others that may now be offensive or unprofessional considering the current events. Although it is acceptable to have fun during a pandemic, you must carefully choose your routes since it may negatively impact the business if it proves hurtful or unkind to others.
Refresh website content so that it is relevant for the current world situation. It’s a good time to provide information to customers concerning the virus and the pandemic. Incorporate your products/services into the post. Again, ensure all information provided on your website and/or in a blog post is factual-based and accurate.
Using keywords such as virus, pandemic, COVID-19, coronavirus, etc. can boost SEO placement and help customers discover your brand in more locations online. It is important to evaluate your SEO strategy and boost your efforts whenever possible. Despite being a health pandemic, it is a great time to improve SEO. Don’t miss the opportunity to improve your SEO ranking and results.
Finally, stay in touch with clients, especially if the pandemic has closed your business for any period of time. Customers want to know the actions that your company is taking to prevent the spread of COVID-19. A quick email or text message offers them reassurance and ensures that your brand doesn’t go on the back burner of their mind. Offer specials and deals if possible as well.
How Can Marketing Help Your Business?
Marketing helps a business grow and build loyal and new customers on a continual basis. Without good marketing, your business is sure to fail and succumb to the competition. The competition is stiff and other businesses know that marketing is important. It is time to help your business shine through the pandemic. The marketing ideas above provide many tactics that help keep your business afloat during this stressful time.