It’s no secret many businesses have had to pivot their marketing strategy in the current state of our world. Where in-person business is limited or restricted and some people are hesitant (and rightfully so) to return to business as usual, many small business owners are hurting. So what can you do to continue to have a revenue stream while in-person sales might be lower? What are the best practices for marketing during a global pandemic? As a Greeley, CO marketing agency, we’ll share some of our thoughts. We’d also love to know what’s been working for you, so feel free to share in the comments.
Pivot Social Media Marketing to Online Sales
This may seem like a no-brainer, but for those of us who are used to doing things the same way, pushing online sales isn’t always intuitive. And for some businesses like salons and spas, what you can sell online is limited. Thankfully, more and more businesses are able to open up, albeit with new restrictions in place to keep people safe.
Still, since regulations can limit the number of people in-store and some retail is still not open, online sales are key! Even before the new coronavirus, eCommerce was one the rise, with some sources reporting that even half of seniors were shopping online on a regular basis. Now with online shopping as some people’s only way to get what they need, it’s time for you to make your business as online-friendly as possible. What does that look like when it comes to social media?
- Consider making things easier for shoppers by promoting free shipping on social media.
- Use an empathetic voice with your social media audience. You don’t have to push sales with every post. Know that some of your regular audience is out of work and might not have disposable income. Be a positive and understanding presence in their social media feed and they will come back to you when they are able.
- Take this time to widen your audience beyond a local following. Since anyone can order from you online, have your followers share your page with friends (a good way to do this is by offering a gift card or prize to a random follower who tags three friends in a post) to broaden your audience.
We worked with Raquel Jandreau, owner of Sassy Bagz boutique in Downtown Greeley (pictured above), to develop an online strategy that fits her business. We utilized a few of these strategies to continue to offer her customers a way to support her and her business during these unprecedented times. You can find more about Sassy Bagz via her online store.
Lean Into Your Loyal Customers
Your loyal customers miss you! Give them an exclusive way to support you, and for you to support them during this time. Social media is a good way to engage with your loyal customers, but there are other ways too. Your email list is a key way, and a longer format, to connect with the people who are passionate about your brand. Your loyal customers want to know how you’ve been doing with all that’s been going on. Don’t be afraid to be honest about the challenging time, while still sharing optimism about the future. Offer deals only to your customer-base on your email list and let them know it’s an exclusive deal.
Depending on the business, another great way to connect is as grassroots as calling your loyal customer base to check in and say hello. This is an ideal strategy for health care practitioners, gyms and other niche studios, and other service-related businesses. Personal phone calls are not the right strategy for everyone (less applicable for retail), but definitely a simple way to let your loyal customers know you care. Again, they will return to you when they are able and will remember the kind gesture.
Flexibility is Key
If there is one thing we’ve all gotten used to during this pandemic, it’s how quickly the world can change. Our businesses are being guided by government regulations designed to keep people safe. But that makes marketing a challenge when it’s impossible to be in control of what happens in the future.
During this time, if you want to be successful and maintain sanity, you must hold everything loosely and let your marketing strategy remain fluid. Many businesses are taking this unusual season to spend time and money on projects that have been on the back burner. Perhaps a rebrand has been on your wishlist for a while but you haven’t been able to prioritize it. Or SEO for your website is something you know you’re lacking, but you haven’t had the time to explore what you could do to improve. Now just might be the time to one-up your marketing strategy in a way you weren’t expecting.
Need help with marketing your business during this time? We’d love to pitch in! Our team of experts can help with any project, large or small, from website design and build, to videography for a Facebook promo. We’d love to know how we can help. Contact us today to see how we can assist with market during this global pandemic.