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At this point, you are probably at home, wondering when life (and your business) will get back to normal.
Sorry to disappoint you, the roads ahead are extremely challenging for small businesses – both B2C and B2B. What can you do now to help your business survive the economic fallout of the COVID-19 outbreak?
Ok, take a deep breath. Yes, the situation is unprecedented. But remember,
“When the times are tough, the tough get going.”
Shutting down marketing during difficult times will make it an uphill struggle for your business to recover when things get back to normal (and they certainly will).
It’s not a time to panic. The typical knee jerk reaction is to cancel all marketing budgets and shut down marketing operations immediately. Whether you’re a family-owned business, a startup venture, a retail store or any other type of small business – you can expect revenue losses in the next few months.
The US Small Business Administration recommends allocating 7-8% of your gross revenue on marketing and advertising every year.
You must maintain at least the minimum 7% marketing investment throughout the Corona pandemic.
Remember that SEO and digital marketing are a long-term game.
By continuing your digital marketing game now, you level up against businesses that pause their marketing efforts now.
This is the time to polish your SEO strategies and execute creative digital marketing techniques that you have put on the backburner for a while.
Connect (Semi-Formally) with your Customers
Your customers are likely to be at home, relaxed and with ample time to answer your questions. Ask customers to share their unique experiences about your products, services, customer experience, etc.
The audio/video gives you get detailed insider info about your customer needs. You can use this customer information in the coming months to create content for your blog posts, social media posts, etc.
Do a Free Audit of your Site
Use this slow period to review your site’s performance.
Clear your Administrative Backlog
Invest in New Content Targeting Multiple SERPs
As a business owner, you’re generally focussed only on the day-to-day activities – sales, inventory, customers, hiring, cash flow, etc. Now is the time to optimise your content for different types of organic results.
Videos are here to stay and are dominating the marketing world than ever before. Shoot classic, relevant videos that can benefit your customers.
Optimise your Online Reviews
You’re likely to have plenty of reviews that you haven’t answered yet. Now, is the time to provide a thoughtful and helpful response to each review.
Update your Google My Business Page for Local Customers
Is your business operating special hours due to the Corona outbreak? Or is your team working from home? What are the special measures you have taken to protect your employees and customers?
Update your Google My Business page to reflect these changes.
Stay in Touch (Digitally) with Customers
Don’t let the Corona pandemic cut your relationship/communication with customers. With that said, avoid tacky and opportunistic disaster-related promotions. Don’t make your customers feel that you’re using the situation to take advantage of them. Instead, be open, honest and genuine in your communications with customers.
Focus on Customer Retention
All B2B business owners know that it’s next to impossible to generate new leads amidst the doom economic scenario. So, shift your focus to – taking care of existing customers.
Above all, Keep Calm and Get your Game On
Don’t panic. It’s not the end of the world.
Nothing lasts forever – not even the Covid-19 pandemic.
For this, too shall pass. And, customers will soon be out on the streets doing what they were doing earlier.
Focus on the Long-Term & Stay Visible
One major challenge facing businesses of all sizes is that their budgets are cut going forward. And, that includes marketing budgets as well.
The smart move here is to – focus on the long-term and focus on your brand-building efforts.
Use your minimised marketing budgets for the maximum results.
Keep your brand light burning through the Corona pandemic. For trying to reignite it after putting it off entirely in 2020 is not only challenging but also doubly expensive and time-consuming.