We’ve all heard the advice to “expect the unexpected” dozens of times. That doesn’t make it any easier when it arrives.
Very few of us would have guessed a pandemic would upend our business plans for 2020 while dragging sections of the economy into a standstill almost overnight. And yet, that’s the situation facing a lot of sectors in the economy. Businesses in hospitality and nonprofit organizations that rely on events for funding have been hit particularly hard. It might be difficult, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t things we can do to learn and adjust.
One of the most crucial business skills you can develop is the ability to change your focus and approach on the fly. In today’s post, we want to share two online marketing lessons from the pandemic. Better yet, we want to show you how you can put them to use immediately.
Lesson #1: Online Marketing Isn’t Something You Can Do All at Once
Have you noticed how some of your competitors might be scrambling to build a customer base and steady revenue stream overnight? This is something that happens every time there is an economic downturn.
It’s relatively easy to keep your company moving when times are good, but it’s much harder to stay in the black when money is tight. So, during any recession or economic hiccup, you’ll see business owners trying to cram years’ worth of branding and outreach into a couple of small campaigns. It never works. Buyers don’t have any loyalty or familiarity with the company, so they don’t respond.
The big takeaway here is that you should treat sales and marketing as gradual processes. If you’re tempted to course correct in a big way because of the current crisis, take a step back instead and ask how you can best serve your existing customer base. They are the ones who are most likely to find ways to work with you in the near future.
Lesson #2: Not Every Online Marketing Channel is Essential
Just a couple of months ago, there were lots of business owners who were putting off important adjustments to immediate response campaigns (like search or social pay-per-click ads) while paying a disproportionate amount of time to social media. It’s just more fun to post pictures of your dog than it is to optimize your Google Quality Score.
Suddenly, though, many of those “soft marketing” campaigns are less important. That’s because when the chips are down, business owners want results. Social media is valuable if you’re using it to generate returns, but you don’t worry about busywork when you’re trying to put food on the table.
The point isn’t to emphasize any one online marketing channel over another. Instead, it’s to show that, good times or bad, you have to work the parts of your branding and promotional plans that generate a positive ROI. Take care of the essentials first. Those campaigns or activities might not be as enjoyable, but they do keep revenue coming through the door.
A Smart Approach to Online Marketing in 2020
Far too many businesses are still following an online marketing playbook that was developed for a different economy – or worse, haven’t changed their approach in years. If you aren’t following current trends, adjusting to new best practices, and learning from your competition, then you’re bound to lose ground to competitors who are better-prepared.
If you think it’s time to put a smarter, more efficient strategy into place, then talk with the digital marketing experts at Weblinx. We will be happy to schedule a free consultation and show you what we’re doing to help our clients stay one step ahead of everyone else.