The world is currently in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic. Although the majority of people think the worst is over, the number of cases is still increasing. In the last week of March 2020 alone, there were more than 13.8 million cases and more than 434,000 deaths worldwide.
While the spread of the virus was halted due to extensive social distancing policies, now is not the time to sit back and relax. After more than a month of lockdown, your business may still be on the fence about reopening, and that’s what worries us the most. Without customers coming in to buy your products and services, you’re losing out on revenue. Your employees are worried about getting sick and being able to provide for their families. And most importantly, your brand reputation has taken a significant hit due to the spread of misinformation and fear. Now is the time to act – before it’s too late.
A Strong Online Marketing Plan
Even prior to the pandemic, your business may have been operating at a loss. Recruitment and training costs alone put you at a monetary disadvantage. With the added pressure of ramping up production during the pandemic, you may have found yourself struggling to stay afloat. That’s why it’s so important to develop a strong online marketing plan to minimize the damage and get your business back on track.
When it comes to digital marketing, the majority of small businesses aren’t equipped to handle the tasks independently. In order to ensure you reach your target audience and can take advantage of all the digital platforms, you need to hire someone to help. Even if that means outsourcing some of the work. Alternatively, you can use an online marketing agency that can take care of the whole process for you. Regardless, it’s crucial you have a plan in place before you start investing in social media or email marketing campaigns.
Creating a marketing plan doesn’t have to be complicated. You can use a tool like HubSpot to help you brainstorm ideas, write marketing copy, and track the results of your marketing campaign. Having a clear handle on your budget and objectives will help you determine how much you can (and need to) spend on each platform.
Choosing the Right Social Media Platforms
It’s well established that social media can significantly impact your brand’s image. During the pandemic, the odds of your brand appearing in a positive light have decreased. So it’s even more important to choose your social media platforms wisely. Depending on your ideal customer, you may want to consider which platforms they’re currently using and which ones you think they’ll appreciate most.
If you can, find out which social media platforms your target audience is currently using. You can use tools like Social Media Examiner or Social Media Today to discover what types of content your audience is consuming and how they’re engaging with your brand. From there, you can determine the best platforms to use for your marketing efforts.
As of May 2020, Facebook is the most popular social media platform globally, with about a billion daily active users. If your customers are mostly on Facebook, you’ll want to consider using the platform for your marketing. Not only is it the most popular one out there, but it also allows you to easily engage with your audience. If you’re looking for a platform to grow your audience, try TikTok – it’s currently the second most popular social media platform, with about 800 million daily active users. It’s also worth noting that TikTok is owned by TikTok Inc., a company worth over a trillion USD.
Setting Up Email Marketing
Besides social media, email is another extremely effective and free tool for marketing. The only caveat is that emails have a significantly lower delivery rate than tweets or posts on social media. So you’ll have to spend a bit more money on email marketing campaigns to see the results you want. But it’s definitely worth it.
One of the most popular email marketing platforms is HubSpot. If your business is already using the platform, you could take advantage of their affordable and easy-to-use email marketing product. Or if you haven’t used an email marketing platform before, you can try out HubSpot Free for 30 days. The platform makes it easy to set up automated email campaigns so you can send personalized emails to your customers. Plus, you can track the results of your emails in real time.
Optimizing Your Website
If you already have a well-designed and functional website for your business, you can use it to your advantage during the pandemic. People are now searching for information about the virus as well as ways to avoid becoming sick. So if your website contains helpful information regarding the pandemic, such as updates on the latest research studies, it could drive significant traffic to your site. Plus, having a well-designed and user-friendly website is a great way to ensure you stand out among your competition.
In order to reach your target audience and make sure they’re taking advantage of all the information you offer, you may want to consider creating a series of blog posts about the pandemic. You can use a tool like Google Analytics to track the results of your blog posts and determine the best times to post and which platforms to use. For example, if you notice your blog posts are typically getting the most views when posted on LinkedIn, you may want to consider using the platform for you next marketing effort.
Even prior to the pandemic, your business may have been operating at a loss. Recruitment and training costs alone put you at a disadvantage. With the added pressure of ramping up production during the pandemic, you may have found yourself struggling to stay afloat. That’s why it’s so important to develop a strong online marketing plan to minimize the damage and get your business back on track.