A decade of a euphemism: the pandemic has changed the way we do business.
In recent history, never before have so many elements of our lives and our businesses changed overnight, from working from home to closing all vertical sectors.
And this huge disruption is driving a major shift in lead production and improving the pipeline for B2B marketers.
To assume that this is a temporary failure is not only extremely short-sighted but potentially catastrophic.
Instead of waiting for “it” to happen, there are five strategies that can put you in a better position now and no matter what happens in the future.
- Rethink your story
Marketing teams – and in this case, the entire company – need to rethink what they can offer customers in this new reality.
Start by placing your brand, your products, and services in the new remote world: how can you make this new way of doing business viable?
You also need to explore and use new sales channels, revenue streams, and industry axes to maintain revenue, which can mean focusing on an entirely new audience than before.
Once you find that out, you need to find new ways to speak to the same and/or a new audience and rethink your investment, channel, and message.
Clearly, digital media is much more flexible than linear / print media and can be filled more quickly with relevant content in real-time, as well as fixed or pre-made ads.
- Change of priority
Instead of simply trying to fit your message or product into the current equation, consider how you can change your value proposition to deliver more than people need now.
Some brands have a more objective approach and campaigns focus on the problem, with a focus on humanitarianism, the community, and collaboration to solve it. Some vendors even make their quarantine solutions available for free during the crisis.
- Form strategic partnerships
Consider looking beyond your products to provide solutions that your customers need now and what they will need in the future. Collaborate with other suppliers in your space to create discounts, add-ons, or other joint offers.
Be creative and remember that some needs, like outdoor work technologies and home products, are universal. For example, Hootsuite’s social media management platform offers small businesses and nonprofits free access to the subscription to Hootsuite Professional.
When you’re ready, people will remember the service beyond what you provided, even if (or perhaps especially if) you’re not directly connected to a point of sale.
- Develop virtual connections
Teams that rely on marketing events, quarterly lunches, or monthly face-to-face meetings with customers must change if they haven’t already.
Organizationally, host your webinars or virtual conferences instead of industry events. Now is a great time to update professional development and emphasize its versatility. Therefore, it is an advantage for both parties to offer these opportunities to their potential customers.
- Be honest and transparent
We are clearly in unknown territory. Your in-house team, external customers, and stakeholders don’t live under a rock – they read the same news as you do. They know it is not “business as usual”.
Recognize the elephant in the room: week after week, month after month, quarter after quarter, and year after year, there were projections thrown out of the window in 2020. Without a doubt, there will be big stars in 2020, T1, T2, T3, and throughout the year.
Employee well-being has a major impact on business success, including sales and customer service. The way you interact with people now, both internally and externally, will make a big difference in your performance in the current situation and beyond.
Unfortunately, no crystal ball can predict exactly when it is safe to return to previous surgeries, and chances are that things will never be “normal” again.
And it looks more like a continuous reboot, rather than a turning point. This adds to the even more complex situation. When certain geographic regions or parts of the vertical value chain restart at different times, an interesting dynamic situation arises for marketers.
But by implementing smart and dynamic strategies immediately, your organization is not only better equipped to withstand the current storm but is also better positioned when clouds start to open.