Marketing through a crisis

19th March 2020

As businesses struggle to come to terms with the magnitude of what lies ahead, many are looking to cut costs. Make savings, eek out budgets and try to make ends meet for an unknown length of time. None of us has lived through a pandemic on this scale; we have nothing to refer to – no handbook on the steps to take.

The obvious thing is self-preservation. Removing the non-essentials and saving every penny in an attempt to survive. Marketing budgets are often the first things to go. When no one is buying luxuries, moving house or taking part in leisure activities, there seems little point in pushing these goods and services. But there will be an end to this at some point, and those who survive will be the ones who diversified, kept themselves relevant, and above all made sure no one forgot them.

Communication is key. Right now, the majority of us are living our lives on the internet, whether it’s checking the latest news, keeping in contact with loved ones or ordering basic groceries for delivery. Self-isolation is rife, and a smart business will make sure they are the ones who become part of this new way of living. No longer able to rely on footfall, as more and more people stay at home, the only place you can remain visible is here, online.

Stay relevant, offer things that people need, do something that people remember you for. You will no doubt remember last weekend that the Duke of Richmond offered to deliver meals to elderly neighbours in the Cambridge Park area. Their Facebook post was shared more than 2,500 times and liked by more than 1,300. Is this getting them any extra business right now? Unlikely. But everyone will remember that gesture when this whole chaotic episode has passed. And when, in the months to come, you are looking for somewhere for Sunday lunch, it’s likely they will come into your mind.

If you allow communication to break down, your clients or customers will shift their allegiance to those who remain visible.
It’s easy to get spooked by the long-term projections but there’s good news out there too, so be ready. There is one thing for sure, your competitors will be. Take this as an opportunity – what else can you do? Tell people what you’re doing, talk, talk and talk some more. We may be distancing ourselves socially in the real world, but online you need to get even closer.

Posted in: News