MARKETING TIPS: WHY YOU SHOULDN'T STOP MARKETING DURING A CRISIS
Written by Nathan Bees
Last updated: 22/05/2020
At Yachting Pages Media Group we are passionate about marketing – we love to help businesses flourish and fulfil their potential. It’s what we do.
We understand the predicament businesses currently find themselves in. The world is in the midst of the coronavirus outbreak and economies are grinding to a halt. It’s a difficult time and careful decisions are being made by business owners to ensure they can begin operations again as quickly as possible.
In these uncertain times one thing remains sure, however: Marketing is key – even in a crisis. With this in mind, we’ve decided to share some key marketing tips and advice in a new series of articles, specifically designed to help you help your business during these challenging times.
In the first article, we explain why you must maintain your marketing. Believe us, it’s a no-brainer.
Maintain marketing for long-term reward
At a time like this, the first thought for most business owners is to stop all possible outgoings to save money amid the uncertainty. It’s a natural reaction in a crisis. However, marketing should not be considered an expendable outgoing. In fact, it’s the exact opposite of expendable: It’s the key to your business emerging from the COVID-19 firing on all cylinders.
A profitable business pre-coronavirus can survive a few weeks of low or zero sales and be profitable again afterwards – but it’s essential that it continues communicating with its customers in the meantime. Stopping your marketing will mean there’s no backlog of pent-up demand for your product or service, and customer goodwill will only take you so far. If you ‘switch’ your marketing back on after lockdown is over, it will take a number of months for you to catch up – and by that time it may be too late.
Of course, it isn’t financially viable or necessary for all businesses to continue with paid advertising right now – though if you can afford it, you should definitely maintain it (albeit to a lesser degree) – but it doesn’t mean you can’t continue marketing via other means. Think emails; think social media posts; think promotions. These are all effective ways of keeping your client base connected and informed.
If you have a business that can continue with paid marketing, it will definitely prove to be worth it in the long run. Just because customers may not be spending money quite so freely right now, it doesn’t mean they aren’t thinking about what they will need to purchase when the time is right. You want your business to be right there in front of audiences when they start putting future plans in place, whether this is through ads on Google or on social media platforms. It’s great brand awareness and guess who will come to mind when they are ready to buy again: Your business.
It’s got a secondary benefit too. If your competitors naively pause their marketing efforts, you’re on hand to capitalise. You can claim an even greater share of the market. Simply put, if you stop marketing you risk losing both new and existing customers, all while your competitors thrive. Can you afford for that to happen?
Secure your customers’ loyalty
On the back of the above, it makes perfect sense to do whatever you can to ring fence your existing customers.
If you’re wondering why, ask yourself this: Do you care about them? If you do, there’s no logic in stopping communications now. If you do, whether you intend to or not, you’re subconsciously making it clear that you view the relationship as transactional.
It’s not a good look. In this day and age people are a lot more aware of their relationships with businesses, and they’ll remember feeling ignored when you come knocking again post-lockdown.
In contrast, you’ll reap the rewards if you do continue communications with them now. Plus, on a human level, it’s just the right and decent thing to do.
Whether you’re still selling or you’re on an enforced break, get in touch with your customers and see how they’re doing. No ulterior motive, no enquiring as to their purchasing power, just a quick call, text or email to check that they are doing okay. It doesn’t require much effort, but it can make a world of difference in the long run.
It’s essential to see the opportunity in every situation – you can use it to your advantage. As the old adage goes, ‘When times are good you need to advertise. When times are bad you MUST advertise.’ Never has this rung so true.