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How The Impact Of COVID-19 Is Changing Marketing

How The Impact Of COVID-19 Is Changing Marketing
The outbreak of the Coronavirus in early 2020 has affected the globe in several ways, including customer behaviour and buying trends.
In an effort to contain the virus, countries around the globe went under strict lockdown, reducing the mobility of people and limiting them to their homes.
While people sequestered inside their homes, they had only one way to connect with the outside world – the internet. Needless to say, everything that could go online did. From schooling to gym classes, and from work to recreational events – everything has been happening online for the past 5 months. Therefore, it is not surprising that digital marketing has also been affected. The global pandemic has forced brands to reassess the way they have been marketing and advertising pre-COVID. 
Brands need to be creative while thinking about their future marketing campaigns as governments around the world are taking strict actions against the companies that are using Coronavirus as a way to exploit the customers. Moreover, for marketing campaigns, content that is already scheduled for the upcoming months needs to be evaluated in terms of emotions, imagery, and context used in the advertisements to avoid any insensitivity regarding the coronavirus situation. 

Moving Forward

Brands have to adapt to the ongoing situation for their branding and advertisement campaigns. There are a few questions that you need to be clear about before you reevaluate your marketing strategies: 
• Can our product relate to the ongoing situation? For example, if it is a health care product or a need-based essential 
• Can we promote our product during the COVID-19 in a way that resonates with the customers?
• How can we involve influencers at this time? For example, to raise awareness, to take care of mental health, etc. 
• How can we spread awareness/ positivity while promoting our products? 

Consumer Behavior

Ever since the coronavirus outbreak, there has been massive unemployment, businesses shutting down, and more people losing their jobs due to a lack of demand. With millions of people filing for unemployment, there is uncertainty about the future, and consumers are consciously spending their money on the items they need to survive instead of luxuries. 
For luxury brands, this is an even harder time as no one is interested in spending money on things that aren't a necessity. On the other hand, people are carefully stocking up on grocery and medical supplies due to the uncertainty of availability. 
While people are staying indoors, they are more likely to order from outside, which is why apps like UberEATS, etc. are likely to remain in demand. Moreover, other stores that are offering immediate delivery on daily use products are more in demand. 

Creativity and Innovation

Marketing has always been largely about being creative to engage your audience. With the CCOVID-19 situation, marketers will have to be even more considerate and think out of the box product and convincing the audience to buy their products. 
The usage of social media has drastically increased since people are spending more time indoors, which provides a great opportunity for businesses to shift their marketing on online channels. For stores that were previously operating as brick and mortar need to shift their businesses online and use targeted marketing to attract their customers. 

Online Shopping – A Secure Way to Shop

Coronavirus has massively increased the e-commerce businesses as people feel safe to buy things online, even lockdowns are eased. Customers are finding online shopping convenient and easy to use as it involves quick delivery and is a hassle-free way to get your things at home. 
From a marketing perspective, brands will now have to focus more on customer experience for online customers. They can do this by putting effort into customer services with the help of helplines, Chatbots, and virtual assistants. Surveys and feedbacks can also help brands improve. 
Moreover, several brands are now creating a whole new customer experience with the use of technology so that people can feel connected and well aware of what they are purchasing. Benefit – a cosmetic brand – has recently revamped its marketing strategies as it is difficult for people to buy cosmetics online.
One-on-one virtual assistance, as well as masterclasses, are being consulted by the brand to teach people how they can use the product at home and what would suit them the best according to their skin types. Similarly, several other brands and businesses are taking the help of Instagram and Facebook live to conduct classes and online workshops to educate people about their products.

Promotion

Brands are now focusing on providing giveaways, timely promotions, and gift cards so that people can use it later. As businesses have been greatly impacted by the pandemic, as a way to recover from loss, sales promotions are a good way to attract potential customers. 
For example, several businesses are giving away gift cards for restaurants and retailers to health line workers, which is a good way to create brand loyalty and goodwill. This way, you can attract customers to plan for their later purchases. 
By providing a gift card, businesses can ensure a steady income flow and a steadier way to stabilize the business; it also encourages people to purchase later or give it a gift to their friends and family. 
For example, to support local businesses, you may purchase the services of a carpet cleaning company and gift them to a friend. For all such activities, digital marketing is necessary. 

Conclusion

The coronavirus outbreak was surely an unanticipated event; however, in order to cope up with the changing trends, businesses and markers need to think ahead of time and adapt to what is happening. Things might return back to normal, or they might not; no one is sure of what is to come; however, we have to make the best out of what we have. 
Thankfully we live in a time of technology, and digital media is helping us stay connected with customers and build a relationship online as well. There are several ways we can still execute business and encourage people to shop online. 
Adaptability towards the rapidly changing environment is the key for marketers at this point. Social media marketing has made it more convenient for marketers to advertise while staying in budget. 

Author Bio:

Myrah Abrar is a computer science graduate with a passion for web development and digital marketing. She writes blog articles for Carpet Cleaning Buckinghamshire.
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