The COVID-19 pandemic has brought forth unprecedented times. No one was prepared. No one saw it coming. This includes businesses of all sizes and scales. The social distancing, quarantine, lockdowns – everything collaboratively has led to unforeseen disruption.
Sample the data from the National Federation of Independent Business (NFIB), which states that “As of March 30, 92% of small businesses said they had suffered negative effects as a result of the pandemic. Just 5% of small-business owners said they had experienced no effects at all.”
Times like these are trying and while it is not going to last, there is only so much a business can do to recover from the current and potential losses that the pandemic brought to the forefront. The crux is to put in efforts and be prepared.
If this resonates with your brand or business, and if you want to gear up for the NEW NORMAL, here is what you can do to survive the Coronavirus onslaught.
Why would a business shift focus on brand awareness when clearly, the aim should be to push consumers into buying and generate revenue?
The answer is simple.
By boosting brand awareness, you can still keep the users engaged at a time when they are NOT going to visit the store or buy anything anytime soon. It is as simple as being real and focusing your efforts by doing what is the need of the hour. Additionally, it also helps you generate inbound leads.
So, how do you increase brand awareness? According to HubSpot inbound marketing statistics, it is paid advertising that helped 33% of marketers in their pursuit.
Still not convinced?
According to a whitepaper released by MOWER - a consumer packaged goods brand that stops advertising loses half of its brand awareness in just 2.5 weeks (Simon Broadbent, late 1970s).
Similarly, a study by Nielsen states that consumers watched 61% more streaming on television – part of the huge jump in total TV usage – during two previous crises that kept people housebound, just like coronavirus fears are doing now.
If you are not making concerted efforts to enhance your brand’s awareness, you are wasting time. A lot of it.
“When you can't change the direction of the wind – adjust your sails.” And that is precisely what you need to do in the existing situation.
In other words, you may have had the perfect business plan in the pre-COVID era. But that needs to change now and afterward.
Begin by analysing the impact your industry or niche has been affected by the pandemic, what your competitors are doing, and how you can do better in these unprecedented times. Redoing the existing SWOT analysis, rethinking the external and internal threats, realigning your business goals, are some other measures you can take to see what will work and what won’t.
The core idea is to be realistic and you will not go wrong, even during the crisis mode. Here’s how some brands are pivoting at the time of crisis.
Budget is a big constraint during crisis. However, let it not stop you from upgrading.
As the world slows down, take the moment to upskill yourself and your staff. Invest in webinars, courses, and training that help you prepare for the new world order. Likewise, invest in the latest tools and technologies, which are all being offered at nominal prices currently.
There is no dearth of resources on the internet. This will help your business in two ways:
Even if your business doesn’t make money, you will be ready for taking the next big leap to add to the revenues especially when you focus on domains such as –
You will earn loyalty from your employees and will be able to retain the best of them.
As they say, strike while the iron is hot.
Yes, the Coronavirus pandemic is something that doesn’t occur oftentimes. But who has seen the future and what it can bring with it? What if there is another crisis that hits your business even before it had the time to recover completely from the present one? Should anything unfortunate happen, it will be a blow below the belt.
Take notes during the current crisis and be prepared before the next one strikes. It can work as your shield.
Supporting this fact is a study by Bain and Co., which shows how recessions tend to favour the prepared. As a firm that took timely action, you will tend to grow at a speedier rate.
Take the instance of businesses that are adapting to the current situation by shifting to Account-Based Marketing (ABM) strategy. It can do wonders when combined with email marketing services and has several benefits associated with it, including aligning your sales and marketing teams to work towards a common goal. A highly personalised approach, it engages the target audience and drives more leads. The best part – it fetches results within a short span of time using various tactics in your favour.
Pro Tip: Speed up your lead nurturing efforts with ABM.
This one is plain simple. Now is the apt time to refurbish your digital channels.
One of the best examples of businesses utilising social channels to the fullest is – promotional gift cards and vouchers. Even brands that are closed temporarily, are giving away future discounts, vouchers, product bundles, exclusive memberships, and special offers. This is an extension of their support to the customers and a way of saying that they care. And know the best part? This step is industry-agnostic.
Along with this, optimize your SEO, which includes fixing – broken links, local business listings, tags, 404 error pages, and so on. Next, update the content on your website as well as on your social media pages. Identify the key needs of your stakeholders or target customers and tailor your content to match the same. This will pay you rich dividends over time.
Pro tip: You may want to hire a content agency to do the job for you and effectively communicate with your target audience.
Crises can be difficult to sail through, especially when it is on a large scale as the Coronavirus pandemic. But brands and businesses can still hold their fort by putting a creative foot forward, stepping out of their comfort zone, and staying true to their core values. And when the opportunity presents itself, they can fill the gap by being agile.
Find out how TransFunnel can help you survive in the post-COVID-19 era and succeed. We are proficient in marketing automation, CRM marketing, HubSpot content marketing, and offer multiple services as an inbound agency to propel your business growth.