Now, more than ever, people are facing unprecedented challenges when it comes to the Coronavirus and Idaho businesses. Idaho businesses during the pandemic are finding themselves struggling to communicate with clients and customers. They are now searching for ways to creatively and consistently reach people using methods that are oftentimes foreign to small business owners.
As an expert digital marketing agency, the Redesign team is accustomed to problem-solving for our partners on the regular. However, on the subject of Covid and Idaho businesses, we can probably all agree that none of us expected the level of economic losses and disruption to operations that have transpired. During the lockdown, businesses all over the nation and across every industry have had to spend time learning how to transition the majority of their workforce and services online.
The ability of Idaho businesses during the pandemic to embrace a new business model to fit with current consumer behavior will directly impact not only their ability to survive but also to thrive. These are the businesses which will continue to grow through the pandemic period and beyond.
Before Covid-19, consumers were already making the majority of their purchasing decisions online. So if you haven’t already started establishing your online presence, now is the time.
On the flip side, many business owners are relying more and more on digital marketing to promote their products and services. However, it is often the case that they never learned to optimize their website and other online platforms. When you aren’t completely comfortable with digital marketing, knowing which strategies to incorporate can be hard to determine, especially when you’re in the middle of a pandemic.
So much has changed over the past year, and there are so many new opportunities that have developed for marketing products and services online. In these moments of uncertainty and rapid change, having a solid digital marketing strategy is crucial. Here are a few reasons why internet marketing for your business has become so important during the pandemic.
Consumers are Spending More Time Online than Ever
For years, businesses have relied heavily on traditional forms of marketing to share their messages with their target audience. However, with people now being forced to socially distance and shelter in place, most of these traditional marketing methods aren’t having the impact that they once did. Think about it, what’s the point of putting up an amazing billboard to advertise your services when people aren’t leaving their homes as often as they did before the pandemic?
At the same time, since people are spending more time at home, they are also spending more time online. Even before the pandemic, internet usage was at an all-time high; now, we’re all visiting websites, streaming, video chatting, gaming, and connecting on social media in record-breaking numbers.
There are many ways that businesses can embrace digital marketing during the pandemic, including blogging, social media, and placing online ads. The fact is, your target audience is already spending an obscene amount of time online, and your competition knows it. So if you want to stay ahead of the curve, then you should be seriously thinking about building out a solid internet marketing plan for your business.
Online Events and Networking Have Increased in Popularity
While we’re on the topic of Covid and Idaho businesses, let’s take a moment to think about how business owners have had to pivot to adapt to the new normal. There’s a good chance that your company has had to cancel or reimagine an in-person event, conference, or meeting to adhere to the Covid safety guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Although we can no longer gather the way we used to, social distancing doesn’t have to stop you from hosting events and engaging with your audience—you’re just going to have to get a little more creative about how you do it.
There are many opportunities for you to bring people together online. While it might not feel the same, you can still have a major impact. We’re sure by now that you’ve seen an increase in the number of online ads, social media posts, and email invites to Zoom meetings, Webex classes, Facebook Lives, and other online events.
Until it is safe for everyone to gather in large groups again—and this may be the “new normal” even when it is—businesses are going to have to invest more of their time and resources into digital marketing strategies. Yes, this will be a challenging adjustment for some people. But it is still possible to host events and create amazing experiences for your audience, even online.
Everyone is on Social Media…Why Aren’t You?
Social media isn’t just for checking in on your friends and family anymore. Social media is also used by businesses to build their online presence, generate new leads, and gain more sales. Doesn’t it stand to reason then that your company should also be prioritizing social media?
The reality is that social media is one of the best ways to reach your target audience. We all know that people use these different platforms—Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and others—to connect socially. But did you know that they are also using social media as a way to conduct online research on businesses?
That’s right! Consumers use social media to check out online reviews, learn more about new products, and see how brands are engaging with consumers. Having at least one active platform helps to build trust and credibility with your online audience.
While you don’t need to sign up for every social media platform out there, you should at least be on the platform most used by your target audience.
E-Commerce is Booming
As we continue to discuss Covid and Idaho businesses, we must acknowledge the negative impact this has had on traditional brick-and-mortar stores. We are all still adjusting to the effects of the pandemic on our economy. And for the businesses that have not been able to successfully transition to e-commerce, Covid-19 has meant that they will likely have to shut their doors (if they haven’t already). Whether or not they’ll ever recover is yet to be seen.
Since the start of the pandemic, more people’s buying habits have moved online. Whether you’re selling products or services, the quality of your website will play a major role in determining whether or not you’ll continue to be successful. Having a comprehensive digital marketing plan that includes strategies for optimizing your website is a must. This will ensure that you’re able to connect with potential customers when they’re online and searching for your services.
Here are a few ways that you can optimize your digital marketing during the Covid-19 pandemic:
Optimize Your Digital Channels
Your digital footprint is what establishes your online presence and makes it easy for potential customers to find you on the web. It’s made up of all of the places where your business may appear, including your website, social media, and local directories (i.e. Google My Business, Yelp, Apple Maps, etc.). Search engines use algorithms to assess all of these different platforms and listings and use the gathered information to help people find your business.
That’s why when you’re planning for digital marketing, it’s important to make sure you claim and verify your online profiles, and check that they are fully optimized and up-to-date. The last thing you want is for people to come across outdated or incorrect information about your business. By the way, if this happens, search algorithms will lower your ranking as a consequence of not posting the correct information.
The conversation we’re having around Covid and Idaho businesses has meant that our traditional strategies for engaging consumers have had to evolve rapidly. Over the past year, there has been a major increase in the number of businesses embracing email marketing, including direct email outreach and email blasts.
We’ve also seen businesses sending more text communications and even returning to more classic strategies like phone calls and direct mail. Make sure that your contact lists are up-to-date.
Oh, and one last thing. Remember that we’re still in the middle of a pandemic and many people have lost their jobs. Before you reach out to a customer, be sensitive to their situation before you try selling them something. If you’re able to offer any connections or resources to people having a hard time, consider doing so.
Most importantly, you should be focused on being consistent and building nurturing relationships with your customers. This will motivate them to continue doing business with you once things finally return to normal.
Know What Your Customers Expect
In this digital age, consumers expect to be able to get information about your business on-demand. They want to know if your business hours have changed in the wake of Covid and what safety precautions you’re taking to keep everyone safe.
Make sure that you are communicating across all of your channels clearly and consistently, otherwise you could lose your audience to the competition.
It’s Time to Revamp Your Digital Marketing Strategy
Having the right strategy for your online marketing is more important than ever. Contact the experts at Redesign to learn how we can help you grow your business and come out on the other side of the Covid-19 pandemic even stronger.