Effectiveness of Digital Marketing during Tough Economic Times

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We are in an uncertain economic situation, but it’s tempting to detect that with the advancement of remote working and a synergistic approach, companies are actually moving towards digital channels and embracing the transformation; even now!

-Scott Jones, C.E.O (123 Internet Group)

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In the coming months, it would be interesting to see how businesses become more reliant on their digital strategy than ever. For the majority of the cases, it will be the ultimate deciding factor in whether they make it through the tough times ahead or not.

During an economic downturn, all you have are two choices: You can either choose a doom-and-gloom perspective, pulling back efforts in preparation for “inevitable” setbacks and trimming staff. Or you can simply restrategize and refocus to follow opportunities in this new business context.

Digital marketing is likely to be the clear winner here, and companies – including the ones that never had a Facebook page before – will need to move into social marketing, content marketing, SEO and influencer-led campaigns. Smart companies focus on building new business, prospecting, opening new clients and closing more deals despite the declining markets.

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Of course, this means there are opportunities still out there for the taking, even if you are a B2B supplier in an industry that has been slow to adapt to digital marketing

Digital marketing remains as important in the downturns as it does while the business booms, and here’s why:

1. Lays a helping hand in prospecting when others have stopped

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When the economy falls, your competition reduces, most of the companies will no doubt choose the doom-and-gloom path and operate with much smaller teams and a deficient mindset. The most successful companies never give up on prospecting for finding new businesses. Now is the apt time to build your business with existing, lost and new clients, using the latest digital marketing tools like email marketing, SEO marketing, etc.

With existing clients, work diligently to keep your business sheltered, increase your share of the business and open brand new divisions. With lost clients, demonstrate changes, efficiently fix problems and regain business. For new prospects or clients, go after the most ideal clients and your competitors’ clients.

2.  Digital Marketing is a necessity for people in Scarcity

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A recent research study found that 71% of consumers start their buyer’s journey on search engines like Google, as stated by Forrester.

People tend to turn towards the web for information and options, even before the economic downfall or pandemic actually starts. In case of a pandemic, as the local shops rapidly run out of the basic supplies people need, they immediately look online for access to goods and services. What’s more? As seen during the COVID-19 pandemic, due to strict mandates for social distancing, curfews and the like, fewer people are venturing out of their homes.

Thus, digital marketing is the only way out that can make your business known to consumers, further to being an exceedingly dynamic way to convince them to convert.

3.  Digital Marketing Is Measurable

Perhaps, the most compelling and intriguing reason to invest in digital marketing, during uncertain times, as opposed to other marketing or advertising is that – digital marketing is easy to measure and estimate. You can easily acquire significant amounts of data for a better understanding of how every aspect of your digital marketing performs, which not only gives you precise control over your marketing strategy but also ensures that you accomplish your overall goals, you aimed for.

Even as the buyer behavior will continue to change, in the coming weeks and months, you can swiftly pivot your digital marketing efforts to continue attracting and engaging your audience. Thus, go digital and double down!

4.  Avert Losses with Smart Marketing

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One business, for example, might boost targeted ad spending on social media platforms to highlight a new delivery service or video chat option. But for other businesses, saving money by reducing ad spending altogether may seem a better option.

During an economic downturn or pandemic situation with widespread recommendations, it’s essential to cut your budget down and reduce any unnecessary overhead expenses. The goal is simple, to get your business through the chaotic event and avoid any long-term damage to your brand or your customer base, and that means making fine strategic marketing decisions

It might be a fantastic time to get back to basics with the charm of SEO digital marketing. So, building your organic search traffic can have enormous benefits for your business. It’s a cost-effective way to establish brand integrity and strengthen your online presence, to block your competition from even appearing on the same page of results. After all, while your competitors are drawing back and experiencing similar adverse effects on business, it’s a big opportunity for you to go after their market share.

5.  Assist pivot to New Markets and Services

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Take some time out for brainstorming how your company can come up with interesting content for new platforms, you haven’t had your hands on yet. This includes informative or entertaining video clips, blogs, and photos for social media content, that can be helpful in boosting your organic reach and in some cases, even monetize your digital marketing efforts. By creating alluring content, you’ll stay afresh in the minds of an audience actively hunting out new media.

Try to meet the demand for digital sales by leveraging e-commerce technology, and get strategic with your advertising budget to downplay the economic impacts on your business. Utilize the latest SEO techniques that position your brand high-up in customer feeds and also build organic reach with fresh content. Sooner or later, your clients will seek shopping and entertainment outlets online, so think out of the box and offer new services whenever possible.

This could actually be the perfect opportunity to boost your online marketing tactics and refine your targeted potential customers with your online advertising budget. 

6.   Helps to Keep Your Audience Updated

The best thing you can do during a time of crisis is to communicate and keep your audience updated – whether you’re shutting down the operation, working remotely or maintaining the course in the office.

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Social Media Upkeep

Social media is undoubtedly, the ideal platform for communicating directly with your clients. Chris Dowse, Head of Social, advocates boosting your social media presence to provide customers with easy access to the information they need. One great idea is to announce your official hours of operation and/or changes in communication via every one of your social channels. You can also use this platform as a chance to spread confidence by posting “real world” content like home-office setups. Whether they’re worried or exhausted, they will still be checking these platforms religiously, as soon as they reach home. So, be there for them.

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READ MORE: Social Selling: Reasons Why Companies Can’t Afford To Ignore Social Selling

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If there is a disruption in service, put it out loud on the homepage of your website. Inform your clients.  If there isn’t, announce that as well. Don’t keep people guessing while they’re already nervous about everything else. Be clear. Be direct.

Blog Posts

Just like what we’re trying to do here, give thorough thoughts and perspectives about the current happenings around the world, can guide you during the time of crisis. So, pack in all the information you want to publish to the public, in a blog. Show leadership during the rough times – in whatever capacity you can. Make your visitors and customers trust you.

Email marketing

Not everyone visits your website every day, nor do they stalk you on Twitter to see what your organization is up to.  One way to reach your client is to go straight to their inbox. Update these folks with the straight details – hours change, a number of ways to reach you, details about service disruptions, what you’re doing to “flatten the curve”. Leverage that email list you’ve been building for years!

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This one is the simplest: Update your working hours and broadcast your recent blog post. RIGHT NOW!

7.  Supports to build client relationships based on trust

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The key to distant-future success is building trustworthy client relationships. What clients need the most during uncertain times, is a provider that they can put their faith in, an ally rather than someone simply glancing out for their own bottom line.

Now is the time to focus on building up relationships and bolstering your market share. It may even be worthwhile to downplay the cost/margin of your products/services so that you can acknowledge clients within their means and retain your business during the downturn.

Put your clients first—listening more, helping customers avoid potential traps, educating them on the latest issues and outcomes, and above all fulfilling your promises you made to them. Don’t forget, central to building trusting relationships, is following a pre-defined sales process with both existing and new clients.  Boost your sales now by building client relationships!

There is always a better tomorrow

Sources: Capital Group, Standard & Poor’s

If there is one thing that you should depend on during this time of crisis, it’s the belief that the days will keep coming and then eventually, it will get better and the world will go back to normal soon.  But whenever we regain stability, you will still need digital marketing to reach your audience — and you really don’t want to mess it up or start off on the wrong foot. 

Conclusion

So whether normal happens in eight weeks or eight months, arm your business for that time, offering it every prominent opportunity to attract your audience’s attention and gain eminence within your market.

As long as businesses incline towards digital marketing strategically, we don’t find any reason why it should just serve as an emergency fill-in. Online marketing makes companies more resilient, to deal with any future disruptions.

Consult with the experts at B2B Sales and Marketing Consulting Firms to learn more about how digital marketing can help your business survive the economic outbreak and still grow, with custom solutions for your industry that are tailored to achieve your end goals. 

Try doing what Warren Buffett does
best… “Be greedy when other people
are fearful”