COVID-19 has put business owners in a position where budgeting and cutting cost has become a priority. Due to this, many businesses have decided to cut back on their marketing budget and focus on the most important expenses.
Business owners have many different options when it comes down to cutting marketing costs. Mainly, many businesses are in conservation mode and have cut down their marketing budget to $0. This means that there is lowered competition for online marketing place.
Due to your competition lowering now would be the best time to increase your online presence. Your business will have an easier time reaching your customers and keeping them up to date with promotions and operation hours. With this in mind, we have created 5 benefits of why your business should continue their marketing efforts through the COVID-19 restrictions.
The 5 Benefits Of Continuing Marketing Efforts Through COVID-19
1. Get Ahead of Competitors
The work you put in now will help you get ahead of your competitors. By interacting with your customers and keeping the connection alive you’ll be able to be thought of more often than your competition.
Keep your customers focused on your business. Use social media, ads, and emails to continue to inform your customers on any promotions that your business may be having. Update them on the different services that your business is now offering to combat COVID-19 and showcase your culture to them.
By just communicating to your customers through social media you have provided a free way to showcase that your business is still operating with strength.
2. Capitalize On Customers Ready To Purchase Now
There are many businesses that are facing no choice but to temporarily close down their services due to COVID-19. We have helped and supported many businesses and understand how hard of a choice this is. Customers still have the same needs as before, but now face fewer offerings.
If you’re open for business, let people know! Continuing to market your business through the Coronavirus can be as simple as letting customers in need know that you’re still open and providing the same services.
3. Invest In Your Marketing If You Can
Many businesses cannot afford to invest into marketing at this point. That’s ok, there are many things you can do for free to continue to become a presence. From simple social media posts to uploading pictures of your business and posting updated take out procedures. There’s marketing tactics for any investment level.
If you are able to invest more money into marketing then you have an advantage in reaching your customers. In past recessions the businesses that invested in social marketing was able to reach more customers and in turn receive more sales because of it. Promoting social posts, creating search ads, and creating an SEO foundation are all great ways to accomplish that.
Take a moment to analyze your situation and see which marketing strategy you would like to approach.
4. Reassess & Reallocate Your Marketing Budget
Currently, trade shows are simply not an option with the COVID-19 pandemic. This means if you were planning to invest $X into trade shows or other in-person events, then now is the time to divert that budget into digital marketing.
Some businesses have paused or reduced online advertising with Google Ads and moved that budget over to search engine optimization (SEO). That way, they can make improvements on their organic rankings. This will help their businesses overtake their competitors when the pandemic is over. This is an investment that WILL yield a very strong return once daily business returns to normal.
5. Change Your Delivery Method
For example, here are some ways you may be able to change your delivery methods during this pandemic:
- Medical Professionals can offer virtual consultations instead of in-person consultations – and the same goes for financial advisors and other types of professionals.
- Local retailers can offer to deliver goods to customers instead of having their customers arriving personally into their stores.
- Massage spas can promote their products instead of their services. This ensures that there are no person-to-person interactions.
- Other businesses can offer discounts for payment up-front.
For example, restaurants near me are offering “bonds” where customers can pay $75 to get $100 worth of food in the future when the restaurant reopens. Businesses could do something similar with discounted gift certificates.
These are great ways for businesses to continue their marketing efforts. The best results are always to mix and match and combine many of these benefits. Expanding your reach is crucial during these times, and can really define the ongoing success for businesses.
We have compiled three different ways that you can utilize online marketing for your businesses. Take these next tips to really stand out from your competition.
3 Ways You Can Use Online Marketing
1. Social Media Marketing
We believe that social media marketing is the most accessible platform to reach your customers while staying safe at home from the COVID-19. It is a free way to advertise your business while your customers are spending more time online.
Everyone from parents, kids, and the general public are trying to stay in their home as much as possible. There is no doubting that because of that social media use is skyrocketing every day. With increased reach, engagement and time spent on social platforms, why would a business owner choose now to pause their social media efforts? Put your brand in front of where your target audience is already scrolling.
2. Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Given the nature of your business, is it common for consumers to Google search the product or service you provide? If so, SEO is a process that can help your website appear in the top rankings on a search results page. SEO can take some time…unless your competitors pause their SEO efforts! This is exactly what’s happening for many of our clients; their competitors are scaling back their SEO efforts out of panic, causing our clients to jump ahead in SEO rankings at a faster pace!
3. Facebook/Google Ads
When business slows or uncertainties arise it’s a common reaction for business owners to stop all advertising efforts. Why continue spending money if consumers aren’t actively purchasing, right? Wrong!
First of all, it’s important to note that not all consumers are tightening their wallets. There are those who are ready to spend now & continue life as normal. Your business needs to be ready and in front of them! For consumers that aren’t spending as much now, they will later as soon as normalcy resumes; and who do you think they’ll purchase from?
Advertising on social media and Google and Facebook Ads will keep your brand relevant and in front of your target audience. When customers are ready to purchase, they have a higher likelihood to purchase from your business and not your competitors.
How SEO Can Contribute To A Higher Online Presence
However, this pandemic is a good reminder that it’s much easier and less costly to market to existing customers versus acquiring new customers. The key question here is, “What else can you do to help your existing customers?
- Can you offer additional products or services?
- Can you offer a pre-pay or cash deposit you can offer a discount for?
- Can you sell more with a bulk discount?
- Can you partner with a marketing company that is already doing this for their clients to enhance your product or service?
Make Sure Your Business Can Be Found Online (SEO)
Search traffic has increased significantly over the past week and will continue to climb as we hunker down. We’re all glued to our computers and phones looking for updates within our community. We’re also looking for entertainment and ways to pass the time. For many, that includes shopping online.
Anything online right now will be consumed more than ever before. This is not the time to be hidden. You should be using search engine optimization (SEO) strategies to climb to the top of Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs) so your business can be easily found.
“People still place orders and need things even when at home. A lot of people still contact companies during work hours, and that is not going to change just because they are home. Your competition may adjust but that doesn’t mean you have to stop everything and lose sales.
But what I’ve learned from going through two crashes (the dotcom crash in 2000 and the real estate crash in 2008) is that the best time to double down is when others are not.”
During an economic downturn, you’ll find that you will have less competition, which means it is easier and faster to get results. In some cases, you’ll be able to get deals that will lead to a potential reduction in pay-per-click advertising.
Take This Opportunity To Boost 5-Star Reviews
Additionally, now has NEVER been a better time to boost your 5 star reviews with our review generation tool. Usually, the main difficulty in increasing your online reviews is no motivation, no time, or they just plain forget. A lot of times, this is why 1 or 2 negative reviews can really hurt your reputation if you don’t have a lot more positive ones to balance you out. The business owner should have pages of past client’s contact info (email and phone) and can use this quarantine time to their advantage.
Everyone is at home on their phone or computer right now and they have nothing but time on their hands. Imagine if you had a tool that could not only get you new business on demand when you use it, but also made it so easy for your customers to leave a review on, Google, Facebook, and Yelp that it massively grew your reputation above your competitors.
Why SEO Is Important For Your Business
Google and other search engines want you to practice SEO because it communicates to them that you’re running a quality website. Once you’ve accomplished that, search engines know they can recommend you to their users. The main goal for search engines is so their users have a good experience. That is what SEO is all about — showing search engines that you’re trustworthy enough to earn a recommendation.
Highly-competitive industries make it harder for individual companies to rank well. You need to make sure you’re working with an agency that knows what they’re doing and has a long track record of success doing it.
Our clients grow their business in all of the online business directories (Bing, Yahoo, Yelp, yellowpages.com), and use social media to market. They use other strategies like Google Ads and review generation as low-cost tools for improving your ranking and visibility on Google.
Especially reputation management. Take the time you have now to use our Review Generation tool. Everyone is on their phones or computer at home and with the help of our advanced review tool, you can increase your reputation on Google, Facebook, and Yelp faster than ever before…especially in the middle of a recession.
SEO is like the gift that keeps on giving. With other forms of marketing, your exposure stops as soon as your payments stop. Take Home Advisor ads for example. The moment you stop paying them for your advertising, they will pull your business down. Goodbye exposure. The same goes for Yelp, Thumbtack, Angie’s List … even Facebook and Instagram Ads.
With SEO, however, the results are long-lasting. Yes, it takes some time to achieve top rankings. BrandRep guarantees first page results in 90 days guaranteed or they work for free until the job is done. Those rankings will remain for a long time, and with year-round “maintenance,” will keep you in the best position for growing your business long term.