It seems the only thing on everyone’s minds right now is the COVID-19 pandemic, and for good reason.
Aussie companies have been faced with the mammoth task of adapting business and marketing plans, reallocating budgets, and trying to think outside the box to create new ways to deliver products or services. Unfortunately, these are uncharted waters, which has left a lot of people feeling like Mark Wahlberg in the movie “The Happening”:
The AdVisible team has always been tuned in to the latest changes and trends in marketing to help our clients — and now we want to put our minds to good use for our fellow marketers and business owners. A month in, we’ve gathered some handy insights to help your business continue to reach your customers during the COVID-19 pandemic.
How is COVID-19 changing our behaviour?
As travel bans and lockdown restrictions leave all of us stuck at home, one of the biggest changes we’re seeing is that Aussies are spending more time on screens than ever before.
KASPR, a research company linked to Monash Uni, reported up to 80% increase in internet demand across the country last month. As people spend more time working from home and less time out and about, we’re also seeing a decline in mobile phone use: Mobile search traffic was down 25% in March compared to February.
So what are we actually doing ‘in iso’? We’re not just spending more time on Netflix (although that would be nice). The New York Times and SEMRush found that search trends are growing across a number of platforms, including:
- Remote collaboration services like Zoom, Slack and Microsoft Teams
- Social apps like Google Duo, Nextdoor and Houseparty
- Home fitness from online yoga classes to dance and gym workouts
- Food including delivery companies and online cooking websites
- Online education platforms for kids and adults
- Video games (no explanation needed)
What does this mean for businesses?
While the first reaction is to think it’s all doom and gloom, the COVID-19 pandemic actually provides a lot of opportunities. The massive disruption to our daily routine, plus the increased amount of free time (and boredom) means people are open to exploring different brands and finding new passion pursuits.
The COVID-19 Brand Navigator found that 24% of people in Australia have tried a new brand because of the pandemic, and more than half say self-isolation has allowed them to take up new hobbies. That’s a huge opportunity to get your business in front of new customers.
During this time, it’s important for your business to work with the pandemic, not against it. This leads us to the big question…
…so how do I change up my marketing during COVID-19?
Pivot to a digital-first strategy
There has been a pretty consistent shift from traditional marketing to digital for some time now, and COVID-19 has just put the foot on the pedal. With more people spending time online, it’s important to think digital first.
Conduct an audit of your current channels. How do they stack up if this is the only communication avenue you have with customers for the next six months? From here, you can quickly identify areas of improvement across the customer journey, like revamping your website or increasing your social media presence.
Experiment with content and social media
If you’ve ever wanted to create a video series or even get your business on TikTok, this is your moment to shine. With more time on your hands and content consumption at an all-time high, it’s a great opportunity to experiment with new platforms, launch a podcast, or play around with live-streaming.
While you’re experimenting, don’t forget about community management. Respond to your customers quickly, and keep up your regular posting schedule.
Catch up on your SEO
SEO is a long-term investment, and requires a lot of groundwork before you start to see the results. This is the perfect moment to target any keywords that competitors are outperforming you on, or optimise your website content to improve your rankings. What you do now will pay off over the long term, particularly as we move from self-isolation to recovery.
Invest in paid advertising
It might sound counterintuitive, but investing in paid advertising is a great way to get your brand out there during the pandemic. Traffic to digital media platforms, like news sites and YouTube, is up 21%, which means there’s a bigger pool of customers who will see your ads.
On top of that, as more companies reduce their budgets, cost-per-clicks have dropped significantly. In other words: there’s less competition, and it’s cheaper to get traffic to your website.
If you’ve had a cut in budgets, there are still ways to get your business out there. Google and Facebook have both come to the table with advertising relief for SMBs, such as Google Ads credits.
Need help adapting your digital marketing during COVID-19?
It’s still possible to increase leads and sales during the pandemic, as long as you have the right partner on board. We’re here to help you get through this, together.
If you need help adapting your strategy, drop us a line here and speak to one of our digital marketing experts.