Adaptability. Pivot. 180. Halt. Resume. Marketing in a pandemic, something no one ever wrote the rule book on or covered in webinars, until now. There isn’t one industry or brand in the world who hasn’t had to stop and evaluate their business. Marketers have had to find creative ways to get messages out and adapt strategies in a world where information is changing daily. As we all navigate through these uncertain times, what should we be doing, or not doing, during a global pandemic when it comes to marketing?
Do: change the focus of your marketing strategy
Take a hard stop at existing marketing strategies and campaigns. Information is changing and so should your strategy. Re-directing your focus will allow you to market more effectively. Old ideas and campaigns won’t be relevant right now, and your focus and fingers need to be on the pulse more than ever.
Do: be human, show emotion
While society is apart physically, togetherness is a theme that shouldn’t be ignored. Advertising campaigns that tap into human connection will stand out during this pandemic and will be memorable for years to come. Your brand can show emotion, it can connect in ways it would never have before.
Do: be adaptable, be nimble
The word of the pandemic is pivot. It’s important for marketers and brands to be able to adapt and pivot their strategy, messaging, and campaigns to stay relevant and with the times. Whether it’s a shift in production or increasing your digital strategy and infrastructure, the need to be nimble is a must.
Do: stay connected and communicate
Whether your marketing strategy has slowed down or sped up, always remember your audience. Keep the communications flowing; show that you care and that you are thinking of them, tell them how or if your business has changed, and the safety precautions you have had to implement.
Don’t: talk about the virus if you don’t know what you’re talking about
Leave the COVID-19 talk to the experts and keep it out of your marketing strategy. If you’re going to speak about the virus in a campaign, share the positive messages of staying home or share uplifting stories.
Don’t: make your selling message overpowering
Perspective is everything and there needs to be a line drawn on in how ‘sell’ yourself and brand. You don’t want to come across as taking advantage of the situation or being insensitive to what is happening around us. Remember, focus on brand perception and feel, verses a call to action.
Don’t: Use automated campaigns
Things are changing rapidly and what was once a marketing message on Monday, may not be relevant, or in good taste come Saturday. Limit the use of automated campaigns and push out content or messages in real time when possible.
As marketers and business leaders, one day we will be able to look back at this time with immense pride in our ability to adapt and keep pace with an incredible amount of ever-changing information, along with navigating our brands and businesses through unchartered waters. We have all learned that we are both in this together and we will overcome this together.