Any crisis brings the wind of changes. The coronavirus pandemic has put businesses in completely new working conditions with online retailers being forced to adapt the marketing strategy to existing realities.
Regardless of the reasons, crises and recessions are characterised by a number of inevitable attributes:
- A decrease in demand. Consumers are less inclined to spend, big purchases are postponed “until better times”
- A decrease in purchasing power. The less cash flow, the fewer money is in people’s hands
- A decrease in the liquidity of the banking system. Banks reduce risky assets, lend more prudently and try to cope with the panic of depositors who are in a hurry to cash out personal funds
- Unstable exchange rate. The rate is changing in accordance with the increasing foreign currency demand, thus complicating financial planning and procurement
- Increased basic products demand. Due to the threat of higher prices or under the pressure of panic, people literally sweep the essential consumer goods off the shelves
Achieving financial efficiency becomes a primary businesses’ objective during an economic downturn. With this being the key to the continued existence and preservation of jobs, cost optimisation becomes one of the main anti-crisis strategies. Mature companies are cutting back on everything that is not necessary to life support the business. And here it is very important not to cut down the branch on which the business hangs on. If you stop investing in marketing – you are likely to show economic efficiency, but it will not last long.
The economic downturn is changing the structure of demand, leading to the emergence of new market niches and opening up the “redistribution” opportunities of the market.
Below are the eight tips on how to use new opportunities, reduce costs and at the same time maintain the effectiveness of digital marketing.
1.Protect branded traffic
You need to engage customers looking for brand-specific products visit your site, not a competitor’s one. In a crisis, it is unreasonable to lose market share in the hope of fair competition. The same is also relevant to affiliate marketing. Make sure you are not receiving your own website’s traffic at an additional fee via CPA networks.
2. Save performance tool budgets
Offline advertising requires significant budgets at the start, while its effectiveness can only be assessed at the finish. Moreover, it is impossible to measure the contribution a particular advertising vehicle has when it comes to sales growth.
Digital advertising allows you to run campaigns and analyse their effectiveness in real-time. Carefully calculate ROAS (advertising campaign effectiveness), but do not deprive your website of the advertising budget. Usually, having the same budgets during a company crisis, you can get an even better return on investment.
During the quarantine period, there is a risk that the cost of advertising will increase due to an increase in online purchases and delivery services demand. Only time will accurately show, as this is impossible to predict in advance.
3. Set up retention marketing
Users who visited your website before, make 83% of the total number of transactions and bring three times as many revenues than the new ones.
When under conditions of scarcity, strengthen your brand loyalty and increase sales through Email / Push / WhatsApp / SMS campaigns. At the same time, remember that it has nothing to do with spam. Focus on entertainment, information and customer care.
4.Interact with your social network communities
Big retailers tend to allocate poor marketing budgets to social networks. This is usually no more than 5%, and the worse you, as a business owner, can do is to those cut back when in quarantine. Your customers will spend more time at home, meaning they spend more time on social networks. Increase the amount of useful and entertaining content. Of course, you should not launch the giveaway of the latest iPhone, but what you need to show is that you are not indifferent to the situation, sympathise and calm people down.
Properly configured analytics of display campaigns saves from 40% to 60% of the advertising budget. This is achieved with targeting, combined audiences, frequency capping, preserving along with that the coverage and transaction numbers.
6. Launch New Services
Crisis and epidemics not only create problems but open up opportunities for the emergence of new products and services. Here situational marketing works much better than any pre-planned activities.
Provide users with the opportunity to purchase consumer goods and essentials. If such products miss recommendations, be sure to add them.
Launch new services that could be useful in the changing market conditions. Help users who failed to find the necessary offline and let them easily complete the purchase on your website.
A remote employee or contractor is cheaper. In many areas of marketing, it is more convenient to work with an agency: it is easier to hire and you do not need to mentor and motivate. Besides, it has its own IT infrastructure. Finally, you will not have to fire the agency.
8. Train and develop your team
To achieve better results, being better tomorrow is the strategy your team needs to follow, no matter what the circumstances are. A crisis is not just a hard time but also a room of opportunities. This is a big chance to master new tools, explore the changing demand, discover additional opportunities and start moving in a promising direction, which could remain unnoticed during economic stability.
And what is most important, the crisis will blow over in the end. The survived will become unbreakable, and the experience of the crisis period will create the conditions for brands scaling. Global economy remembers the crisis of 2008. Tempered we are – and we’ll make it!