By Nicolle Martin
We are facing a new time in the history of our country – and the world – and learning to adapt can be challenging. We are all adjusting to either working from home or working differently, social distancing and doing our best to keep our family and friends healthy and safe.
Marketing and sharing information about your organization is also challenging. You need to continue to showcase your offerings, but what is the best way given everything else people are dealing with today? It is important for all organizations to continue to communicate with their customers and clients about what they are doing as companies. Are you open? Are your products available? Do you have tech support lines open? But what about talking about new offerings and carrying on with the marketing plan you had laid out for the rest of the year? Here are a few tips:
- Be considerate. Everyone is experiencing an overload of information right now given what is happening with COVID-19. Make sure the information you are bringing is relevant and interesting to your audience. Be thoughtful and considerate to only share information that will be interesting to them at this time.
- Know your audience. You may have to change the way you market. Take a look at the medium you normally use to reach your audience. For example, if your company has advertised on billboards in the past, this is not a good option right now. People are spending more time on digital media. Get information on the publications your audience reads and consider online ads. You should also be working with a public relations professional who can help you in reaching out to editorial staff to get your message to your audience.
- Modify your message. If you planned to launch a new offering in April and it’s still ready for launch, take another look at the offering and think about what aspect of that product is important for what organizations are facing today. While you may have had a key message identified before, is it still relevant or is there a better way to showcase what this offering does based on what people need now? Think about what people are facing today and make sure your message is on target to help them in the current crisis. If it doesn’t, consider putting a hold on releasing the product. Make sure you don’t miss the mark with your messaging and that what you are talking about is relevant today.
- Be creative. With trade shows and conferences being canceled in all industries, organizations need to get more creative with their messaging and outreach. There is competition for engagement and leads, Page 2 of 2 April 15, 2020 and for the most part, everyone is distracted with the health crisis we are all facing. Your marketing and messaging need to be on target, professional and creative to get the attention you want.
- Look at the future. Plan now for what you will want to do after the country starts to return to “business as usual,” even if it is in stages. Get your team together and look at the 2020 plan that you had in place prior to the coronavirus. What modifications do you need to make? Look at the product offerings, timelines, budget and staffing. Make a new plan.
Remember, now is not the time to stay quiet. Your customers, and the industry, want to know what you are doing. If you are making efforts for the community to help get through this pandemic, talk about it! Let people know how your team is and what changes the organization has made to keep your employees safe. Show that you have empathy for what is happening and are not just focused on the bottom line. Now is the time to share the human side of your organization.