1. Make all of your advertising messages educational and empathetic. Let your customers know you care and that their safety is your #1 concern, while also sharing with them how you can still be of service. There’s a fine line between “here for you” and “opportunistic.” Make sure your message is on the right side of that line.
  2. If you are able, amp up your marketing on anything relevant to what is happening and how you can help your customer. Don’t completely shut down your advertising presence unless you are completely shut down. Just make sure the advertising you do invest in is focused on a positive ROI (even if it’s lagged revenue).
  3. Internet consumption is up 60%. If you can still advertise, the internet is the place to do it. (especially Connected TV)
  4. Drive customers to your online store, or if you don’t have e-commerce, consider “no-contact” free deliveries or curbside pickup of your products.
  5. If it’s relevant, talk about your cleaning and sanitation practices in all of your marketing.
  6. Make use of idle time to improve your website and your presence on Google My Business. Create product videos. Take photographs of your products. Write blog posts or improve the product descriptions on your website.
  7. Consider preparing a “We’re back!” marketing campaign.
  8. Are you getting negative comments on social or Google My Business? Take the high road. Don’t feed the trolls. Ignore them or fall on the sword and apologize. Don’t get defensive, no matter how unfair the comments may be.
  9. Do some research. Although what is happening with COVID-19 is unprecedented, there are similarities to what happened following 9-11. Read up on how businesses survived that economic crisis for some tips that might make sense today.
  10. Are you a local business? Follow the national brands’ leads. There’s a saying in marketing: “Local follows national.” The big national brands have professional agencies coming up with and testing advertising right now. They have bigger budgets that they can leverage to test the waters. Watch how they respond to what’s happening and take some cues from them.

Stay safe. If you can continue to work, make your safety and your employees’ safety your priority. Wash your hands and follow the protocols for social distancing. Everyone is under a lot of pressure right now. But remember… pressure is what turns coal into diamonds.

Thanks for reading.

David McBee