Over the past month, we’ve all received the dozens of emails coming from every company we’ve ever brushed hands with about all the things they’re doing during the COVID-19 crisis.
But what about the things they aren’t doing?
I can tell you they aren’t keeping the same digital advertising strategies.
There’s a spectrum of debate going on around the ethics of advertising during the COVID-19 crisis, and whether or not companies should continue with their normal digital advertising strategy — but how can they expect to keep the status quo when nothing going on right now is normal?
Morality is subjective, and for that reason there is no perfect answer to what you should be doing – but if you do choose to continue advertising, here are three tips to help:
1) It’s not the time for sales
For the vast majority of businesses, it’s not the time to start pulling out your best taglines and steepest discounts to drive quick sales. Businesses aren’t the only ones reeling for cash — consumers are, too. Be empathetic in your approach, and your customers will reciprocate.
2) Showcase your thought leadership
Now is your time to shine as a thought leader in your industry. Bringing value to your audience in a time of critical need is going to keep your business top of mind significantly more than a 10% discount. Find ways you can educate your audience. Multiple clients of ours have pivoted from trade shows and conferences to free webinars and Q&As on industry topics, and they’ve seen great results. The world is looking for ways to pass the time, why not give them one?
3) Be creative in your approach
It’s time for big ideas — what is something your business can do that others can’t? Find it, capitalize on it and promote it. At a time when many businesses are facing the same hurdles, be the one who comes up with a different solution. If you position yourself as a trusted and value-adding leader in the industry, your customers will value your work infinitely more now and in the future.
Even after lockdown restrictions ease and people begin to return to their regular lives, there is going to be a new normal in marketing and advertising. As we recently saw, Tyson’s advertorial feast turned to famine in a case of undercooked messaging. What we say and how we say it is going to be under a microscope for the foreseeable future. Keep that in mind as you use this time to adjust and you’ll be coming out on the other side one step ahead.