It’s an uncertain time.
Coronavirus has well and truly impacted every aspect of normal day-to-day life, including business operations. This has forced many organisations to pivot their usual offerings and make changes to pre-existing strategies in order to abide by current restrictions and public health measures. For some business types, this pandemic has put a complete halt to any activity whatsoever.
While your knee-jerk reaction, as a business owner making tough budgets cut decisions, is to look at your marketing spend; We think it’s crucial that you’re aware that you might be putting yourself at even more of a disadvantage in the long-term.
Clearly, we are biased on this topic (considering we offer digital marketing services ourselves) – but even if you don’t choose us as a provider, every organisation should know the repercussions of severe marketing termination during a volatile time.
We will look at this through the scope of two business circumstances:
Circumstance 1: those that are still able to operate in some capacity
Circumstance 2: those who are out of action until the COVID-19 situation eases.
We also want to preface this article by saying, for some organisations in this time, spending on marketing may simply be unfeasible. Don’t worry, we’ll look at solutions for those with limited spending capabilities, or none at all – believe it or not, there are steps that you can take now that will put you in a better position later on (and won’t cost you a cent).
If you’re one of those businesses that fall into the fortunate category of continuing to operate in some manner (adapted service or not); you still have to take into account the influence of COVID-19 on your customer base. We aren’t just talking about the fact that consumer confidence has dipped, impacting their purchasing, but also their current lifestyle changes. Odds are your customers (existing and potential) are now spending all their time at home, meaning traditional methods of reaching them may no longer be valid. As such, it’s only logical that you are going to have to re-evaluate your communication channels, strengthening those that are now more relied on by prospective clients.
The days of traditional advertising’s reign are over. You may have heard that digital marketing is becoming more and more popular, but now it has entirely dominated. People are staying inside which nullifies the impact of formats such as billboard and radio ads. So now that every cent of your marketing spend is crucial, you need to focus your investment on the channels that are effective in the current environment (particularly given the indefinite timeline on social distancing regulations).
With many businesses immediately moving to cut advertising spend, this presents an opportunity to capture audiences and overtake competitors. In terms of paid digital advertising, opponents pulling back from auctions means that you now need to bid less to target relevant, high-traffic search terms. Further, some platforms are looking towards some initiatives to support SMB’s advertising during this time financially, so keep an eye out for that.
In terms of organic digital marketing, conducting steady SEO work when similar businesses are slowing down theirs enables you to push ahead in rankings on those trickier high-traffic search results. Now before you get too excited, we must remind you (what we are sure you’ve heard thousands of times), that quality SEO work still takes time. While you won’t see immediate results, you’ll be setting yourself up to take over your competitors and will inevitably be better positioned for when market interest does return to normal. If you’re lucky, you will see faster position movements, but sadly, there’s just no way to be sure of that. So, if you aren’t already engaged in any SEO work and looking for a specialist company to help you take advantage of the current situation, we have one warning for you:
Be wary of anyone who promises you #1 position on a deadline
Why? They are lying. You will never hear anyone from SEO Shark guarantee you a specific position within a set timeframe because there are just so many variables to consider. Don’t get us wrong, providing some general guidelines for long it will take to see keyword movement isn’t sketchy, but if you’re being assured an actual position in x number of weeks – sorry to tell you, but nope.
Just because we have to throw this in – in case you are looking for an SEO Company (that doesn’t give you false expectations) to guide your site though this time, SEO Shark offers flexible digital marketing packages that don’t require a lock-in contract. Feel free to get in touch with our team if you want to find out more about what we can do for you.
Things are looking bleak now; we understand that. It’s essential to remind yourself that this is a temporary state and the stringent restrictions will ease eventually. With this in mind, we will look at ways that you can strengthen you digital competitiveness for when this day arrives– without having to spend.
There’s no point spending on strategies such as pay-per-click advertising when your business is not open for service. It’s more important to put yourself in a better long-term position for when you can operate again. So, this leaves us with one leading strategy contender; SEO. If you can afford to keep any manner of SEO running, it may be beneficial to the improvement or maintenance of your Search Engine rankings. If you can’t, don’t fret because you can conduct some work yourself without any technical experience.
If you have had any SEO work done in the past, you may be familiar with the concept that content is key to a strong digital strategy. While you may no longer be able to afford to pay your SEO company or content writer to do this for you – if your business is out of action and you’re left with time on your hands; you’ve got the opportunity to create high-quality content for your site. After all, no one knows your business as well as you do so the writing that you can now produce (which you may not have had time to do historically) will be supreme.
Writing content can be as simple as adding blogs; this will help reaffirm to Google that your site is relevant, informative and active – all things that the search engine considers when indexing sites. The best thing is, this can all be done by yourself for free, keeping your business on Google’s radar until you’re operational again.
Despite the unsettling situation, it’s essential to maintain a positive and proactive attitude at this time. While things aren’t normal, there are steps you can take now to put yourself in the best possible position for when they are. We hope our advice helps in some way and be sure to keep an eye out for more articles in the future. In the meantime, have a look through our other blogs for more useful digital marketing information.
We are a friendly and reliable team that pays detailed attention to your projects and management of your brand. Our team at SEO Shark has a passion for all things online. We constantly innovate using the latest professional techniques and strategies.