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The coronavirus pandemic has affected almost every aspect of modern life. Finding ways to reach your target audience with your advertising is more critical than ever in this emergency situation. At Coastline Marketing Group, we are committed to helping your business survive and thrive even in difficult times. Here are some of the most effective strategies for navigating the pandemic and ensuring that your business stays viable now and in the future.

Know Your Audience

One of the most critical elements in marketing your products is the ability to assess your potential customers and their needs. This is even more critical during the current pandemic. Making changes to your normal marketing methods to account for the evolving needs of your customers is essential to your success now and when the current emergency is over.

Building Your Customer Base

Understanding your customers is the foundation on which you can build all your communications, advertising campaigns, and marketing efforts. Some of the most important questions to ask to include the following:

By putting yourself in the shoes of your customers in this way, you can often gain insight into the things they are seeking that your products or services can provide. This is equally true for business-to-business enterprises as for those that sell directly to consumers in the public marketplace.

Adapting to Current Conditions

For many people, the priorities and needs that were important two months ago have shifted significantly. With most travel and public gatherings curtailed or eliminated, some of the most important selling points for your business may have changed. Understanding the new normal will help you to appeal to the pain points that your audience may have now.

  • Many of your potential customers may be concerned about the safety of products, especially those delivered directly to their homes or businesses. Providing assurances for your customers that their products are handled safely in the COVID-19 crisis is a good way to manage their concerns and to increase sales.
  • Pointing out your company’s online ordering and delivery options is especially critical during this time period when few people are willing to risk exposure to COVID-19 by going out to shop.
  • Money is a major concern for many families and businesses during the pandemic. Finding ways to reduce the cost of your products or to make them more affordable can help your company to retain your current customers and to attract new ones.
  • Education and training can be extremely useful for individuals and families who are working and studying from home and for those laid off during this emergency. If you have something to teach, now may be the time to let people know.
  • Many people may be exploring do-it-yourself projects to make the most of their unplanned time off. Packaging some products to provide an all-in-one solution for typical projects will help you to reach customers in their current situations.
  • For business-to-business companies, providing services to your clients to diversify their activities may be a winning strategy for maintaining and increasing sales.
    Finding ways to entertain or distract your customers from the current situation is another strategy with strong upside potential.

These strategies only work if you let your customers know about them. Shifting your overall advertising strategy to one more appropriate to the current situation will help you to reach your customers more effectively. Some of the most important messages to communicate during this time include letting customers know you are still open, that you deliver and that you are sticking to best practices for cleaning and sanitizing your premises and your products. These can give your customers an added sense of security during this emergency situation.

Adjusting Your Marketing for the New Normal: 10 Industry Examples

We have put together an infographic to explain how to tweak advertising and marketing for 10 specific industries and business models during the coronavirus pandemic. Follow this link to download the infographic and learn more about how to adjust your marketing plan for businesses that include real estate, fitness, food service, auto repair, and more.

Download Infographic JPEG | Download Infographic PDF

Shifting Gears for Success

Just as Tesla made the turn from manufacturing vehicles to manufacturing ventilators, your company may need to change its entire business model to survive the current emergency. This will require taking a hard look at your current business activities and thinking about how they can be adapted to meet the needs of your customers. Other companies have been successful in shifting gears in the following ways:

  • Distilleries have shifted from producing alcohol to creating hand sanitizer.
  • Dine-in restaurants have begun offering curbside service and home delivery.
  • Online retailers are prioritizing the delivery of orders for basic needs over other orders.
  • Bookstores are focusing on e-books and home delivery of their products.
  • Companies in a wide range of industries are making it easier to order online and to pick up orders while maintaining social distancing.
  • Tailoring enterprises are turning their talents to making masks for healthcare professionals and for the general public.
  • Many companies have moved from office activities to work-from-home arrangements to protect the health and safety of their employees.
  • Some grocery stores have limited the number of customers who can shop at a single time. Special hours reserved for senior citizens and other at-risk individuals have also been instituted in some areas.

Finding ways that your company can still serve your customers in a safe and secure manner will provide valuable continuity for your business during these trying times. This may involve thinking outside the box and creating new ways to provide the right services and products for your loyal customers.

Focusing on Free

Even if you cannot immediately think of ways that your business plan can be adjusted to provide services needed during the pandemic, you may be able to promote your company effectively by offering some of your most practical products for free or at a significantly reduced cost. This is also a great time to expand the content available on your website with blogs, how-to articles and other information your customers can use. By viewing this downtime as an opportunity, you can potentially build your customer base for the future. A relatively small investment now could pay off in increased loyalty and improved profitability when the crisis is over.

Letting Your Customers Know About New Offers

When your new products and services are ready, it is time to let your customers know that you are here and ready to serve their needs. A few simple strategies will make it much easier for your target audience to learn more about what you have to offer now and after the current coronavirus pandemic is over.

Step # 1: Create a Landing Page

Building a landing page that is specifically designed to highlight your new approach will allow you to funnel customers directly to your offers. Your landing page should include a way for visitors to sign up for emails and to opt-in for other contact methods while providing an overview of your new services and products.

example landing page

Step #2: Make a Connection With Your Target Audience

You can connect with potential customers in a variety of ways. Some of the fastest methods include the following:

Solution A: Social media posts are ideal for companies that have already built a loyal following on Facebook, Twitter and other platforms. If you are just beginning to build an audience on these social media sites, however, you are likely to get lost in the shuffle as many other companies and organizations begin social media outreach campaign.

Solution B: Paid advertising on Google Ads and other online sites is a proven method for building a wider audience and making your company part of the conversation among your potential customers. Investing a relatively small amount of money in advertising your company and its products and services could potentially pay off in much higher visibility among your target audience. You can see below some major brands are already adjusting their advertising to meet their customers demand.

discount deliver food service

It is never too late to start the process of building relationships with your current and prospective customers. Advertising is still a key element in maintaining success in the current retail environment. Working with a company that takes a targeted approach to navigating the coronavirus emergency is the best and most practical way to manage all aspects of your marketing plan now and throughout the life of your company.

Conclusion

The right strategies for shifting your business plan and marketing your products and services can allow your business to survive and even thrive throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. At Coastline Marketing Group, we have a deep commitment to helping our clients in the most practical and positive ways possible. We are adjusting our own processes in response to the pandemic and are ready to help you make the necessary adjustments to your marketing processes during this difficult time. Visit us online or give us a call today at 831-789-9320 to request a quote or to talk to one of our marketing professionals. We are here to serve you throughout the duration of the current crisis and well into the future.

 

Article by Phil Fisk
CEO, Coastline Marketing Group, Inc.
831-789-9320
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