With the world being in a complete tailspin at the moment due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, everyone finds themselves in uncharted territory. Very few, if any, small businesses, professional practices and solopreneurs had a contingency plan in place.
I mean, let’s be honest here, who woke up on the 1st of January and thought “Hmm, we’ll be in a global pandemic and under lockdown in April. So, I have to put measures in place to protect my business and employees”? No-one I know, not even me.
So, to make things a little easier and try and make coming out of this a little easier, we reached out to some known Marketers and/or companies to see what they suggest you do to make a clean break when this is over a little easier.
Jeremy Rundle, Founder of AV Digital Marketing
Communication is key, now is the time we must open lines of communication. You need to communicate with customers, employees and other shareholders.
Communication must be honest and sincere, keeping in mind that everyone is in the same boat, we are a little unsure and subconsciously taking cues from others about how freaked we really should be. So, keep communication truthful but optimistic, keep in mind though, there is a fine line between optimistic and appearing oblivious to what is happening around us.
Now is not the time to hard sell anything, nor is it a time to launch a new product (unless you are in a “must-have to live” niche). Now is a time “to be there, show you care and build your list”.
There will be a “new normal” once this pandemic is over, and it will be over. We will make it through this and those who embrace the change and make the necessary adjustments will emerge stronger.
In South Africa we have a Zulu word “Ubuntu”, loosely translating to “I am because we are”, no man is an island. Together, using genuine empathy for the situation we are all in, we will make it through this.
We must do is band together and help where we can. Yes, even your competition might welcome your help. We are human first and now is the time for humanity and empathy.
Amanda Powell, Director of Marketing at Digitalmarketer
Here at DigitalMarketer, we suggest you follow simple 3 rules during this difficult time:
1. Acknowledge the reality of the situation. One of the number one rules in marketing is that you need to engage with the conversation, and the reality right now is that everyone is engaged in the same conversation. The best thing to do is to acknowledge the pandemic and COVID-19. No one wants their business to come across as tone-deaf, so simply double-check your messaging, double-check your visuals, and double-check your offers and promotions, which leads to Rule #2.
2. Focus on audience expansion NOT revenue maximization. Unless you’re selling a truly essential product or service (medical equipment, masks, hand sanitizer, disinfecting wipes) you should be working to expand your reach, not your revenue. Engage with the conversation people are already having and make an appropriate offer. For us, we were fortunate enough to have the ability to open DigitalMarketer Lab for free. By doing this, we generated over 50,000 new accounts. We’re considering that a huge positive. That’s 50,000 people that will now gain value from our product and 50,000 people who have the opportunity to grow as marketers during this pandemic. The idea is that NOW is the time to focus on the top of the funnel and growing your influence as a business.
3. You must believe it is going to be OK. Your team is watching you and so are your customers. Sales and marketing is the transference of confidence, and if you’re not confident, they won’t be either. Yes, things are hard right now, but this WILL end at some point. This could be the moment you’ve been waiting for in terms of going back and focusing on the things that truly matter to your business and honing in on what actually works.
I truly believe that this could be a time that each of us can look back on as a time of growth, of refocus, and of renewed priorities. So, focus on the positives, look at how you can help others, and start thinking creatively to bring positive change for your customers.
Josh Steimle – CEO of Influencer Inc.
8 CRISIS POWER MESSAGES
In an emergency, you need to communicate quickly to reassure your audience and promote positive, rather than negative, action. These eight messages can work wonders for maintaining calm and leading your audience to the best outcome.
- YOU ARE UNDERSTOOD… Your concerns are heard, understood, and valid.
- YOU ARE SAFE… Everything is under control, nothing bad will happen to you.
- YOU ARE REMEMBERED… You won’t be forgotten, left behind, or kept out of the loop. We’re in this together.
- EVERYTHING WILL WORK OUT… Despite the uncertainty and challenges, we’ll get through this.
- HERE ARE THE FACTS… You can handle the truth so here it is, the good, the bad, and the ugly.
- HERE’S THE PLAN…There’s hope, now here is what we’re going to do…
- GOOD WILL COME FROM THIS… We’ll turn the bad into good and next time we’ll be even better prepared.
- YOU ARE LOVED… We care about you.
Note: Only use these messages to the extent you can do so truthfully. For example, don’t tell someone “Everything is under control, nothing bad will happen to you,” if you’re not sure that’s the case. Otherwise, when it’s proven things are not under control you will lose your credibility and these messages will no longer be as powerful when you use them.