Harness the potential of digital communications channels
At cov.help, we elaborate strategies for SMEs to help them get through the COVID crisis. We address topics such as digital communication, setting up websites, financial advice, and more. Throughout this article, we provide insights linked to Marketing strategies to help you respond to the shift in consumer behavior, mostly with the takeoff of online shopping and the “Click and Collect” system.
The sanitary crisis has made it essential to have an online presence. You need to be present on social media, have a functional website, and be easy to find online.
The first piece of advice would be to control costs. Of course, this matters at all times, but even more during difficult times. Marketing strategies and campaigns can be costly and need to be well-elaborated and planned to bring a satisfactory return.
Now is the time to get familiar with free online tools to set up or run a website, improve the SEO, produce content to share, and interact with clients. For example, Canva is a free platform that allows you to elaborate visual content to communicate to your clients. If you want to know more, this article lists 10 online free Marketing tools that can help you boost your
online presence and performance.
Communicate useful information to your clients. If you have to make changes in your business to keep it running, clients need to know. If you join or set up a delivery system (for example, a food delivery platform), you need to tell your clients, and they will be happy to know it. If you need to reduce your shop capacity or set up a “Click and Collect” system, you also need to tell your customers.
Have a thought for the clients that stayed on with you. By keeping on buying your products or hire your services, they have shown that they want to help you carry on. During this crisis, customers stick to the businesses they trust. Thank them personally, even in a symbolic way, with posts on social media. Show them how essential their support is and how grateful you are. You can strengthen these relationships with small discounts on their next purchase or add a product for free on the next order (the product can be one that has a small cost to you).
A trend that has gained momentum during the pandemic is to set up contests on social media. These generate a high engagement at a low cost for you. The principle is to offer one or more products to the winner of a contest. The winner is picked among people that tagged friends under your post, liked your page, or shared your post (conditions vary). There are many free apps to pick a winner in a random and unbiased way.
Post regularly to remind your customers that you are still here and to reassure them. You should test the frequency, not too often so that it feels like spam, not too little so that customers forget you. You can adapt your content to current events (Christmas, New Year, Black Friday, spring, etc.) or updates related to your business.
Put yourself in the position of your customer. Understand what content they would like to see from you. Be creative. Learn how to use the tools at your disposition and exploit them to build new strengths for your business.
Written by Beatriz Pieraerts, cov.help consultant.
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