Don’t stop marketing.
Did you sing the title of this blog post to the tune of “Don’t Stop Believing”? I hope you did. You cannot stop believing or marketing during times like these. Every business is feeling the effects of the global pandemic and financial crisis, which means most are looking for ways to reduce spending. If your first impulse is to stop marketing, resisting the panic can lead to positive long-term effects for your business.
Studies from previous financial crises show companies that continue to market during the crisis tend to recover faster. Don’t get caught in the trap of thinking only of the short-term needs of your brand; think long term and your business will benefit.
My advice is don’t stop marketing, adapt. Here are three ways to adapt your marketing to this unusual time:
- Review: Take a critical look at all your current campaigns to ensure your messages are still relevant and sensitive to the current climate. As marketers, we may forget that a radio spot we finalized months ago is still airing every day. Or that our well-oiled marketing automation machine is churning out weekly emails we approved last fall. If any part of your messaging seems even slightly tone deaf, pull it. You may be able to use it again later, but now is not the time to risk alienating your customers.
- Repurpose: Take existing video, print or digital ads and reformulate the message. Have awesome shots for a print campaign that’s on hold? Use the artwork in a digital retargeting ad to drive more traffic to your website. Sitting on an exciting new branding video? Pull clips to create short videos for social media posts. Or, unearth and recycle a direct mail piece. Get creative and you may find a wealth of low-cost ways to stay top-of-mind, connect and engage with your customers.
- Remind: You’ve worked hard to increase awareness and build your brand equity. Don’t lose that momentum and risk your customers forgetting about you. Whether through their laptops, smartphones or their streaming services, they’re consuming more content than ever before. Make sure you stay in that mix.
No one really knows how long this “new normal” will last, but we know its impact will extend for a long time. If we keep calm and think strategically, our marketing can continue to work for us throughout it all.
Desiree Trimble is either a strategic creative or a creative strategist, data nerd and branding geek, working as a strategist for Hellman. Send her a message at firstname.lastname@example.org or connect with her on LinkedIn.