Marketing during a Pandemic: Getting the balance right will make you memorable

As we are all learning how to navigate through the brave new pandemic world; the reality is that there’s still competition around, solutions / service to be sold, customers to be managed, leads converted and business to be done. So, what is the new operating reference point? How do we strike the right balance between a myriad of competing interests in these challenging times? Let us take a look:

Totally out of bounce is – Tone-deaf, out-of-context messaging, while never a good thing, is totally inexcusable. Right now, the No.1 thing brands and businesses need to be saying: What can we do to help? Now, more than ever, people really do care about how you talk and what you say. But if brands put profit before people, trust will be broken, potentially for ever. How do you want your brand actions to be remembered in the future?

For example, Australian gin distilleries (including Four Pillars distillery) are working together to develop new hand sanitiser products, re-purposing their existing production facilities to meet national demand, and in turn, keeping their workers employed. (Link: https://www.smartcompany.com.au/coronavirus/australian-gin-distilleries-hand-sanitiser-covid19/)

In starts with sorting out the new plan internally and what does the new time horizon look like? Starting from today until when “normalisation” is established (6 -12 months?). What you do in early & middle stages will yield results later. As an agency, our sole reason for existence is to service client needs. Many of these clients have a responsibility to keep their operation running during the quarantine phase. Let your clients know how you are operating, then expand the message to: This is what we can and cannot do at the moment.

Do you have a contingency work plan to cater for the possibility of extended remote working models? Are these remote working models here to stay for your business? How will that effect your sales & marketing? Are your tech, processes, and team ready for more remote meetings and less human contact? Getting the plan out there will go a long way towards giving reassurance and building goodwill.

The effects of Covid-19 are being felt in communities across the world. As people and businesses find a new normal for operating under government-imposed health and safety restrictions, it is time to adapt and be creative. New & authentic ways of connecting and being positively remembered will win hearts and minds. Imagine creative ideas that encourage the user to think in a different way. For example: with the massive demand for online delivery during the Covid-19 quarantine, Menulog, Deliveroo, Uber Eats and even Domino’s have stepped up by offering contactless delivery.

Sydney CBD’s wine bar Prince of York may have closed their doors, but they have rolled out three new ways customers can get their food. These are a ‘party at home’ and ‘cook at home’ packages, which will be delivered to customers and provide them with restaurant-quality meals they can assemble in under ten minutes. (Link: https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/sydney-s-businesses-get-creative-as-city-shuts-down-20200323-p54d11.html)

TIP: Send a postcard to let your customers know you’re thinking about them and can’t wait to see them again. While you are at it, you can even plan ahead and create postcards to welcome new customers when you are open for business again.

The way we say it, is just as important as what we say. This unprecedented crisis demands a re-assuring human voice, not tone-deaf corporate speak, and jargon. It is not the time to play buzz-word bonanza. Instead present social and corporate leadership, as that expresses strength and resilience. Stay consistent on social media, get your brand values out there – not in words, but action.

If this was not evident pre-pandemic – the chickens have certainly come home to roost now. Is the way your business sells / markets aligned with how your customer buys? Take another closer look at your customer journey maps. Identify if there is a unique and creative option to innovate for the future. That is, to enhance customer experience and save costs. For example, integrate remote meetings permanently, so customers can self-serve and book when they want to. Who knows, you might save considerable costs, clients could take to it and it becomes the new operating mode.

There have been some truly heart-warming stories coming out of this crisis, from landlords giving tenants rent breaks, health care workers being “adopted” by members of their community and distillers switching production from gin to hand sanitiser.  In times of crisis, we really see who is willing to step up and help. These are the brands, organisations and people that will remember for years to come. So have a think about how your business can help, big or small, in your community. This is a unique chance to make a huge difference, to be remembered for the right reasons. To do some good.

With all things considered, how will a C19 world effect your sales & marketing strategy going forward?
If you are struggling with this question, let’s  have a chat. Book a personal FREE 45-Minute Consultation with me and we can walk through some options.

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