Marketing through a pandemic….Keeping those connections alive

When lockdown hits, the temptation is to batten down the hatches and just try to escape the storm.  However, I firmly believe, that the best way to get through a crisis is to get out there and ride the waves……make contact with old and new connections, and keep growing.  

This is one of the most important times to market your business properly and here’s why.

You will get a head start

With lockdowns and restrictions, we are seeing a lot of pent up demand.  If you’re in contact with your target audience and connect in the right way, you will be the first person they go to when they are able.

It gives you the opportunity to forge new connections

A global crisis throws up new opportunities.  It gets people talking to others in ways they may not have done before.  Plenty of your target customers may be on furlough, and they may have changed their buying habits.  This could be as simple as the fact they are browsing the internet at a different time of day, not driven so much by office hours.   It could be that they have looked at their buying choices and are ready to make new ones.  The changes Covid-19 has made to all of our lives has drawn people to evaluate what they buy and why.  This is a great opportunity to connect with customers looking to make a change.  Is your product ethical?  Local?  Sustainable?  All of these things are fast growing areas of interest for consumers in this climate.

It keeps up moral

This applies to both your internal and external marketing.  A thriving, buzzing business motivates staff and attracts more customers.  It becomes a self- fulfilling prophecy.  If you are still marketing, you are renewing connections with customers old and new. You are showing everyone you’re here to stay.

You will learn about your business

Going through the process will teach you about the versatility of your business.   Having to make an analysis and marketing strategy during a testing time, will give you the perfect opportunity to identify new connections, markets and needs.  These may extend beyond the time of crisis and may give you a new focus, product or service for your business that you hadn’t thought of.

You will make emotional connections

We are all going through a profoundly difficult time, and that is a thread that joins us together.   Being honest about your challenges gives your audience an opportunity to get to know you, and this insight is amplified by the shared experience of the pandemic running in the background.   Our challenges are all different but they are all bound together by a common theme.  The enormity of this period and the effect on the psyche, also means that connections made now, will be stronger in the long term. A great way to build on these links is through business to business networking. In hospitality, RING (Restaurant Industry Networking Group) is a brilliant group for support. In the travel, retail and tourism fields, Cotswolds Concierge has been doing a great job of championing local businesses.

Don’t treat marketing like a second class citizen by bumping it off the ‘time and finance budget’ when things get tough.  Building for the future is a cornerstone of good business but never more so than now.