7 ways digital marketing has helped sustain business during the pandemic

7 ways digital marketing has helped sustain business during the pandemic

Digital marketing solutions have become increasingly important since the pandemic began, with customers unable to visit stores or facilities in person. There has been a big shift in the need for businesses to stay relevant and connected to their customers using digital platforms.

That’s why we’ve listed 7 ways that digital marketing has helped businesses get a leg up on the competition during the pandemic. 

Boost your digital footprint

How your business is presented online is known as your digital footprint, including places and sites your business is listed on. This encompasses your directory listings, website and social media channels.

Search engines have algorithms that combine all sites where your business is listed to help people find your brand online. This is why it’s important to make sure that all information is up to date and sites are optimised to reflect the current status of your business. 

Making a list of all the places your brand is currently listed online and setting reminders to check and update them every month or so is a useful tip. You can also search yourself and your company in an external window to check how easily customers are finding you.

Not only will your brand be present on a number of business listings, but you may also have links coming from other sources online. So, you may want to do a backlink analysis to see if your links are coming from good website sources too. 

Keeping in touch

Since the pandemic, communicating directly with customers has become crucial through email marketing outreach along with direct mail and social media platforms. Content marketing for small businesses requires the most drive since consumers have been spending less.

Cleaning up contacts/CRM and directly contacting your top 20% of consumers via phone, Zoom or email could be really beneficial to keeping your business relevant. 

If you’re calling customers to sell products or services, then taking the time to check in rather than just hard selling can improve your relationship with your customer base. Throughout the pandemic, many people are struggling with working from home, home schooling the kids and managing a work-life balance. Checking in on clients can be a great way to strengthen relationships and stay relevant, even if you’re not fully in business. 

Consistency is key

Staying constantly in touch with existing and prospective customers can seem daunting, but in light of everything becoming virtual with the pandemic, it’s the best way to maintain your sales and customer loyalty.

As most of the in-person networking events have become virtual, and the uncertainty over whether events will be available again soon due to further lockdowns has left a gap in communications with potential and existing clients.

Adopting a consistent approach to your digital communication with your customer base and partners can give your brand the edge over those that have lost touch. 

Having an email blast once a month sharing all your latest news and info on deals or business-related projects can really help you to stay present as a brand. Creating emails to engage and sending out valuable content adds to your brand persona and helps build on relationships.

Check your keywords

As travelling has been restricted due to the pandemic there is more of a focus on local business and sales. This has caused a shift in the value of certain keywords that would have been used before lockdown. Some of the keywords you relied on previously for your search engine optimisation services may have dropped in searches. Instead, the number of hits for ‘local delivery’ or ‘virtual’ may have risen in popularity as search terms, depending on your business.

Using an SEO audit service to check and find relevant search terms can provide a good insight into what your customers are looking for from brands at the moment. Depending on your business type, implementing additional keywords and phrases like ‘COVID-19’ or ‘coronavirus’ can also help keep your content and pages relevant to what people are currently searching online.

Reconsider your strategies

Delaying and shifting focus on marketing strategies has been necessary for many companies since the coronavirus outbreak as the world has changed. For example, Ford decided to delay their launch of the Bronco car, as they felt that customers may not be keen to buy a new vehicle at a time when travel has been restricted. KFC also pulled their ‘finger lickin’ good’ phrase as the messaging was deemed inappropriate in light of the increased need for hand hygiene.

It’s a balancing act to work out which campaigns to put on hold, scrap altogether or double down on. But, it’s important to consider what is appropriate messaging and meets the needs of consumers when everyday living has changed so drastically.

Mention world events

Silence about a global crisis will not present your brand in a positive light. Trying to continue as normal without addressing world issues will present your brand as detached and not ethically driven. 

No matter your business type, customers will expect updates on actions you are taking to keep employees and the public safe. Crisis communication strategies are also important to address whether your day-to-day business activity will be affected, what customers can expect and how you will handle all customer service enquiries.

Alter your business model

As meetings and events are limited to virtual platforms like zoom, this can affect the way many companies do business. For example, whilst Disney’s theme parks have closed, they have thrown themselves into promoting other offerings like their Disney + Streaming service to still continue business, but through digital methods.

Completely replicating your services online may be challenging or not possible, but finding ways to adapt to digital pathways may still be available to you. 

Optimising your website to be informative and updating key search terms will boost your visibility online. Also, updating your Google My Business page with your latest operating information is crucial for people to know what services you can still offer them. You could also potentially employ a content marketing agency to improve your website user experience and generate blog posts to keep you relevant and in touch with the world.

These are all ways that digital marketing can help your business make it through this challenging period of uncertainty. There is a whole range of digital marketing services provided by agencies, as well as ways you can improve your digital presence yourself. Whether you choose to employ the help of an agency or not, the importance of being present across digital platforms has never been more crucial for all business types.

Author Bio
Sarah is an experienced Digital Marketing Manager at Jellyfish Livewire, a leading digital marketing agency that specialises in web design, SEO and content marketing. She enjoys working with clients to develop effective marketing strategies that help their businesses grow.