The recent global pandemic has affected all aspects of life — including activities within the world of business. Of course, this isn’t the only crisis with global implications that we’ve seen in our lifetime, or even in 2020 alone. Over the past several years, we’ve witnessed economic recessions, travel bans, natural disasters, and many other impactful events — all of which have had a pronounced effect on marketing strategy.
In light of all this, how can your marketing department effectively prepare for and respond to a global crisis? While no one may be able to completely escape the fallout from a pandemic or a recession, there are some ways to adjust your marketing strategy for maximum ROI in the midst of a difficult situation. Here are 3 best practices to consider:
Pivot Towards Conservative Ad Spend
If your business is feeling the effects of a crisis, then one of your first priorities should be to trim unnecessary costs. Granted, some form of advertising is always necessary to keep a company moving forward. However, when you anticipate some penny-pinching in the near future, it’s best to lean conservative for a while. In other words, now is not the time to experiment with your advertising strategy; stick with the ads that have performed well in the past, while adjusting them according to the changing times.
As you determine which advertising initiatives to keep and which ones to put on the back burner, ensure that your ads convey a tone in keeping with the general mood of your consumer base. For most brands, an overly jovial or pushy tone could be a turn-off for prospects during a global crisis. Keeping a pulse on how your consumers are feeling will help you to maximize the impact of your ad spend.
Double Down On Content Marketing
There are many wonderful things about content marketing, one of which is its scalability. If you need to reel back your spending on other advertising mediums, consider investing more heavily in content creation and distribution. As a basic example, if you post a new article once every week on your website, think about posting two or three new articles per week instead.
Why double down on content marketing in response to a crisis? For a number of reasons, two of which are:
Cost-effectiveness. In many situations, it will cost much less to generate new content than to place ads on third-party mediums.
Reach. As the recent pandemics have demonstrated, many crises will not negatively impact the regular consumption of content across the Internet — meaning your target audience may remain undiminished.
Leverage Social Media
Finally, social media platforms offer an excellent way to keep your brand top-of-mind among consumers without coming across as too “salesy” or aggressive. Strengthening your company’s presence across social media by regular uploads of pictures, videos, and micro-ads will contribute to your brand’s overall visibility, while engaging with your followers will position your brand as being very personal — a quality people gravitate towards in times of crisis.
Social media marketing is highly cost-effective, and “social listening” can yield key insights to help you tweak future advertising campaigns. By taking advantage of social media platforms during difficult circumstances, you’ll almost certainly tap into the human need for connection and grow your following in the process.
Granted, following the 3 best practices for digital marketing mentioned above may not be easy. It may require some significant adjustments in your company’s marketing strategy, and even your mindset. However, if you implement these suggestions in response to a crisis or, better yet, have them up your sleeve in case a crisis emerges, then you’ll be one step ahead of your competition — and that’s always a good thing.