back to news

BLOG: Restarting your marketing post-COVID

4 September 2020

Lockdown gave most of us a little extra time to reflect. Even if it was just the time that you used to take to commute that you suddenly had freed up, those few gained moments allowed many of us to re-evaluate ourselves, our work/life balance and refocus the way we approach our business responsibilities.

One enormous benefit of a state of complete change or, some might say, chaos, means that we all have had to work a little harder to make sense of the future. And that’s absolutely the case when it comes to marketing a business post-COVID.

Adaptability and pivoting
One of the key aspects of business survival is adaptability. Many industries weathered the lockdown period better than others, often by adapting, or pivoting their products and services to fit with the changing circumstances. So, for example, if a company couldn’t open a shop selling its wares, the next best thing was to deliver direct or sell online.

Re-evaluating marketing strategy has allowed brands that normally offer in-person services to make the most of the digital space for communication, offering consultations through video chat and live or on-demand sessions. Industries that rely on physical goods have thrived through the implementation of socially distanced collection and contact-free delivery.

Shoppers are key
Shoppers are rethinking their own values for making purchases so it’s important that you reflect these changes in your marketing messages. During the pandemic, shoppers embraced e-commerce like never before with changes in buying priorities and values too. So, bear these changes in mind when you are re-evaluating your marketing methods.

Reassess your marketing activities
As a local business, it’s always important to keep your current marketing activities under review, but even more critical post-pandemic. Ask yourself what has worked to date and what hasn’t. What is your most profitable product or service? Who are your target customers and how do they find out about your business?

As well as your general marketing activities, it is important to examine your existing marketing collateral, both digital and printed. Here are some questions to ask:

  • Are your marketing materials still current or do they need updating to account for any COVID-related messaging?
  • Are they professional and consistent?
  • Is the copy customer-friendly?
  • Are you using effective calls to action that encourage engagement?
  • Is your tone of voice consistent throughout your marketing channels?

Customer base
It is important to know your customer base; a real understanding of your customers will make your marketing much more effective and powerful. Questions like these help to hone your knowledge…

  • Who are your most profitable clients? (This might not necessarily be your top-spending clients)
  • How did they become your clients?
  • Have your clients changed post-COVID?
  • How do you retain them?
  • How often do you communicate with them – and does this communication need increasing?
  • Have their motivations to buy changed recently?
  • Cross-selling opportunities

Don’t miss out on any cross-selling opportunities. Create a matrix of all your clients and plot which products and services you sell to them. Doing this will help you to identify any gaps, which you can then fill for a super-quick marketing win!

Review what is and isn’t working, both during and post-COVID. By prioritising the most effective marketing channels, you can refocus your budget to make it more effective and provide a better return on investment.

We may love to hate our competitors, but they can be invaluable when it comes to figuring out our own marketing strategies. Always keep tabs on what they are up to, especially in today’s market, and see what you can learn from them. It’s not cheating – honestly! See it as vital research.

And here’s another list of questions to consider…

  • Who are your competitors?
  • Have they changed post-COVID?
  • Is their offering more appealing than yours?
  • Have they adapted their offering?
  • What’s the pricing differential?
  • What do they do well?
  • What social media channels are they using?
  • Sales process

Your sales process can make or break the success of your business. There’s no point taking the time to perfect your marketing strategy if you’re not able to convert those leads into paying customers. As we’ve already mentioned, customers are changing the way they buy and their motivations to buy are shifting too, so you need to regularly review your sales process to see how leads are gained and converted.

Social media 
Embrace social media. Everyone took to their mobiles during lockdown and so it’s a vital communication channel for most businesses. It can be a little time consuming to set up, but it is also an incredibly successful marketing tool when used well. Make sure you outline your social media goals and identify the best platforms for your brand. And remember, a great social media presence doesn’t happen overnight, so don’t worry if your brand isn’t racking up thousands of likes just yet.

This blog was kindly supplied by Michelle Jones, MD of Ketchup Marketing.  T: 01476 852990