We have all heard the words for months now; “COVID-19.” People have repeatedly seen it on the news, heard it from family and read about it online. This Coronavirus has touched nearly every aspect of our lives, and for some, it has taken everything away. But for all the confusion and uncertainty this has caused, the American desire to persevere never ceases to amaze. Now that the height of the situation is somewhat calming down, what will businesses do to adjust to the “new normal” of the market? The answer lies in being smart and planning ahead.
Regardless of which side of the COVID-19 situation you have been on, there is no mistaking that this will go down in history as one of the biggest events to ever shake our country’s way of life. 69% percent of businesses already expect that they will be decreasing ad spend this year, and 65% of them have seen a decrease in revenue for 2020. There are avenues that businesses need to re-think or re-formulate, even cancel selling certain products due to COVID-19. Some companies have even begun re-tooling to sell new “acceptable” products like masks and disposable rubber gloves; the former being number one in the top growing products of 2020. Obviously, this is not going to perfectly apply to every business. An HVAC company cannot suddenly stop selling Trane air conditioners to make rubber gloves and hand sanitizer. Every business owner has the same questions on their minds right now, “how long until I can open, what happens when I open, how do I get back on track without jeopardizing myself or my clients?” Now, depending on what sort of business you own, the answer could differ greatly depending on your vertical. Someone who works in automotive might have a different situation than another business owner who has a restaurant. So, what is the answer?
Business owners are not encouraged to make it seem like things are normal, or as if this foreign virus does not exist anymore. Rather, a new normal will be a way for consumers to engage in the activities that they usually do while keeping cautious. Masks, sanitizing and social distancing will still have to be the norm. Jobsites will need to be cleaner and safer, and that means your business is going to need time to make sure you are doing things right. Here are some aspects to think about to help your business rise above COVID and settle into the new normal.
Recognize the rise of a contact-free economy
Social distancing is important right now, and that has no intention of slowing down anytime soon. Digital commerce, telemedicine and automation are so far to be the most accepted turning point in business. Zoom, Skype and other virtual meeting applications are becoming the accepted golden standard for communication between co-workers and clients alike. Do your customers know that you provide these options? The quicker your business has a plan to adapt to these conditions the better off you will be.
If you are an essential business, keep your area clean and customers informed
Some businesses cannot easily transfer operations to the “work at home” strategy like others can. While some industries accept that many of their workers will continue an indefinite work from home plan, other more practical industries need to get back to work still. Factories, landscaping, and automotive are just some of those businesses. Keeping your space sanitized with proper information available for workers and clients is going to be the norm. Social media can also be an effective tool to let others know that you are open and taking the necessary precautions to make someone’s visit less risky and more encouraging.
Keep your brand presence strong and flexible to change
Most kneejerk reactions to COVID-19 in business have been to either pause or stop advertising campaigns all together. But other professional sources, such as iwco.com recommend the opposite. During any sort of crisis or pandemic, flexibility is the name of the game. To adapt your business to changing times is challenging, but worthwhile if you have the right guidance to help you execute a plan. Stopping your brand exposure will only lead to further problems in the long run, such as keeping a social media presence or PPC standing on search engines like Google. The last thing you want is for your business to completely disappear from the public eye. Regardless of where your target audience is, reaching them through digital or traditional marketing is still important, especially as more people are stuck inside engaging with online content.
IronStride Marketing & Digital Co can help business owners, such as yourself, stay on track through otherwise uncertain times. IronStride is more than just marketers, we are partners that will stand with you and guide you in the right direction. We will help you formulate plans that achieve results and create an outlet to track those results. We are brand story tellers that will help keep you fixated in the viewfinder of your target audience. From website updates that involve COVID-19 regulations to advertising via PPC, SEO, TV and radio, we will make sure you have the tools you need for success and adaptation.