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4 Ways to Pivot During the Pandemic

4 Ways to Pivot During a Pandemic

As we continue self-isolating to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus with the hope of re-opening slowly, I wanted to share some effective ways to keep your business running smoothly and successfully.

Here are 4 marketing strategies to consider:

1.  Focus on Digital Campaigns

With the shutdown or slowdown of most brick-and-mortar businesses, small business owners should rely on digital strategies. A big part of brand marketing during this pandemic and into the future is going to be shifting a major part of your small business online.

Consider using Facebook Ads, Google Ads, Instagram for Business or LinkedIn Ads to direct traffic to:

  • Well-researched and useful blogs and videos
  • Online products with free shipping
  • Virtual services you can offer, whether that’s mental health therapy or online interior design courses 
  • Gift cards that can be used now or in the future

That said, don’t be afraid to pause campaigns that aren’t relevant right now, or that you think may turn your customers off.

2.  Update Your Google My Business Listing

Your customers and potential customers are counting on you for the latest information about your small business. If you’re closing your company temporarily, whether you’re changing the hours you’re open, or offering curbside pickup right now, you need to let people know.

Using Google Posts can be a great way to update people on everything from reduced hours to gift card purchases. Here’s some guidance from Google on how to best change your profile.

And don’t worry about SEO implications when you’re editing your profile. For example, marking your business as temporarily closed will not affect your search ranking, and Google will still display you in the search results.

If you don’t immediately see the changes that you make to your Google My Business profile, don’t panic. Google has said they may review updates for quality before publishing.

3. Keep Posting on Social Media

Even if you have to completely shutter your business for the time being, stay active online. In addition to tools like Google My Business, customers look to your Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram channels for the most up-to-date news about your company.

Some of the updates you could share include:

  • Your crisis management strategy, including the steps you’re taking to protect your employees and customers (sanitizing workstations, not letting sick employees work, ensuring employees wear gloves, etc.)
  • Changes to hours or business policies (for example, only letting one person into the store at a time)
  • If you’re taking online orders and/or offering free shipping
  • If you have private shopping or curbside pickup options
  • New online courses or offerings (share how you've adjusted to working virtually)
  • Uplifting quotes or personal messages

A good example of how one of my clients is pivoting during COVID-19: AYI is offering virtual interior design services and courses via Zoom to teach you how to update your space (Painting SOS, Accessorizing assistance, etc). 

4. Be Careful What You Share

There is a lot of misinformation circulating on social media, and it can be dangerous to give your customers the wrong advice (not to mention hugely damaging to your reputation).

I suggest mapping out your crisis management strategy before sharing an article with your email subscribers or reposting something you saw in your Facebook feed. Use trusted sources for coronavirus resources, like the World Health Organization.

Whatever your marketing strategies for the COVID-19 crisis are, always look to your brand for guidance. Your brand vision, mission, and values should be your guide as you stay active online and let your customers know that you’re here for them—now and in the future.


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