The human coronavirus, responsible for the disease known as COVID-19, has turned the global economy upside down over the past few weeks. Executive lockdown and stay-at-home orders forced businesses across America to alter their service methods. Many even had to close their storefronts entirely.
These are difficult and confusing times—we can’t overstate that. But while it’s easy to fall into the trap of fear and disaster thinking, COVID-19 doesn’t have to spell certain doom for your business. As long as you’re willing to adapt your sales model and update your digital marketing plan, you can still help your customers and keep your business alive through an economic recession.
Are you trying to figure out how to shift your old tactics into a successful digital marketing plan that withstands a pandemic? Keep reading to learn how thoughtful messaging and creative thinking can boost your sales even now.
Acknowledge the Problem and Pivot as Needed
First and foremost, it’s time to take a good hard look at your offers. Are you providing goods and services that people can still use while they’re locked indoors?
If not, take some time to evaluate whether it’s time to change things up. You may be able to take your existing offers and repackage them into ones that customers can still use.
Can’t repackage? See if you have the resources to start offering something new.
If you are already selling things that are relevant, this isn’t the time to hike your prices. After all this is over, people will remember which companies preyed on panic and desperation.
Instead, consider putting your customers first by lowering costs.
At first, this may seem counterintuitive. Even so, offering a COVID-19 discount or free shipping can help your revenue stream flow even as people tighten their purse strings. You might also want to start offering new services, like free contactless local delivery.
Take Your Storefront Online
If your business relies on a brick-and-mortar storefront, you might have neglected your online presence. Now is the time to make the shift into digital sales and offer your products for sale online. Without customers browsing during daylight hours, use your store to take product photos and list everything you have in stock.
While you’re updating your website, make sure to take advantage of online marketing tools for small businesses. These can boost your site’s SEO and gather information about what your customers are looking for. Even the free version of tools used by professional marketers, like Yoast, can make a difference in helping your content rank on SERPs.
Are you starting your eCommerce store from scratch? You might be tempted to build the website yourself to save money, but if you don’t have prior web development experience, it may not be a great idea. With so many businesses making the switch to online sales, it’s more important than ever that your website stands out from the start.
A DIY approach can make you lose valuable time and revenue while you try to figure out what you’re doing. Instead, invest in professional site-building services. Then, rather than being stuck with a site you’ll have to fix when this is over, you’ll be able to build on a strong eCommerce foundation that continues even after your physical shop opens back up.
Be Mindful of Your Digital Marketing Plan’s Messaging
If your previous marketing style was forward and sales-heavy, it might be time to re-think your messaging. Consumers are being bombarded with negativity and fear from every angle right now. If your marketing adds to their feelings of inadequacy, they won’t want to buy from you.
Take a look at your current messaging and ask yourself the following questions:
Are you spreading hope or negativity? Are you helping people in need, or just pushing sales? Is your content empathetic and relevant, or deaf to the struggles your customers are facing?
If your current messaging is missing the mark, try to keep these things in mind.
First, Coronavirus is on everyone’s mind. Don’t be afraid to talk about it, but make sure you’re also listening to the new struggles your customers are facing. It should be obvious that you’re committed to their health and safety and that you understand the financial hardship many people are now under.
Finally, let people know you care about them. Even if your products and services aren’t essential for survival, they can still fill a need or brighten people’s days. Make sure your customers know that you’re here to help them make it through these difficult times.
Branch out to Social Media
Along with updating your messaging, now is the time to update where you’re connecting with your customers. Since they’re stuck at home, more people are spending their time scrolling through social media. This is the perfect opportunity to take your blog posts and product descriptions and repurpose them on Instagram, Facebook, or Pinterest to reach your clients where they’re at.
Plan for the Future
Above all else, don’t abandon your plans for the future. Even if you have to put new product launches and store expansions on the back burner for a while, operate under the assumption that you’ll make it through this. Use what you learn during these upcoming weeks and months to make a rebound strategy for when things start to return to normal.
In Times Like These, We Need to Work Together
Even though many of us are working remotely and by ourselves, it’s more important than ever to find cooperative solutions to our problems. Human connection and outside ideas make us stronger in a time when we’re hurting for inspiration.
If you’re crunching the numbers and not sure how you’ll make it through this with your current strategies, it might be time to reach out for support. VujaDay Creative Digital Agency can help you revamp your online presence and create a digital marketing plan that resonates in today’s world. Let us put our experience to work for your business and, together, we just might emerge from this pandemic stronger than before.
Contact us today to start reinventing your digital foundation.