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How to Market During a Crisis (Without Being Insensitive)

How to Market During a Crisis - feature image

The coronavirus outbreak has affected the entire globe and all its people and industries, including digital marketing. You don’t want to be insensitive to your audience, but you can’t close your business – you need to make a living as best you can, too. This guide will help you to continue your campaigns in a non-offensive manner.

How to market during a crisis

Audit your content

Most marketers plan, create, and schedule content in advance. To avoid putting out insensitive content you should double-check the content that is currently running, as well as the content you have in the pipeline. Remove anything that is no longer relevant and save it for when it becomes appropriate again. Just because a campaign has certain elements that aren’t suitable for the time being doesn’t mean you have to scrap it altogether.

Some content can still be salvaged for right now, you just need to pivot the message with some good editing. A campaign about “reaching your customers” can be changed into “supporting your customers”, which bodes much better. Avoid visuals of crowds or people touching.

Be agile

We’re always talking about agile marketing – being quick off the mark and jumping on a trend-filled bandwagon. In times like these, this ability is vital. Take down those hard-sell ads and replace them with a message from your business. How is your company handling COVID-19? What precautions are you taking? How will the lockdown affect you and your customers? Addressing these issues will set your audience at ease.

To help your agility, keep up to date with official news sources and presidential addresses.

Don’t capitalise on the crisis

This applies to any crisis, but it’s particularly important to remember in the climate of anxiety and fear. No “Hot COVID-19 Sales!”, price hikes on sought-after items, or other tone-deaf messaging.

Now, we’re not saying you can’t have a well-meaning discount to help ease the financial pressure off your audience. Free delivery from an online grocery store, for example, would be perceived rather well, if your messaging reflects that this special or discount is coming from a place of wanting to help.

Adjust your budget allocation

The coronavirus has led organisers to cancel events and impose travel restrictions, both which will impact those face-to-face customer/client connections. The tendency is to focus that budget into existing marketing channels. But does this really make sense for your brand? Is bombarding consumers with more ads, webinars, and posts really “pushing the needle” or are you just annoying them?

Gather your team and brainstorm ways to fill the gap. Why not use this time to test a channel you haven’t used before? If the current crisis has affected communication, why not start a newsletter to keep your clients and partners informed, or a blog page on your website?

We hope this guide has been helpful. Leave any questions for us in the comments below 😊

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