Business owners throughout Australia have spent months of sleepless nights wondering if they can withstand the economic impact of coronavirus, and how they’ll survive in a changed Post-COVID world.
Now that life is slowly regaining some kind of normality, businesses that survived are now scrambling to find traction, rebuild momentum and get a head start on the long road to recovery. We made it through, but it’s still an uncertain time for all of us, and it’s important to recognise the power we have as business owners to lead the way forward with innovation, transparency and a little HOPE.
We’ve assembled a useful guide to help business owners who are seeking strategies to get back on their feet, attract more customers, and support other local businesses.
The Web-Sta Post-COVID Marketing Recovery Checklist
Firstly, it’s critical for business owners to take the time to evaluate their current position and where they want their business to be in the next four weeks, six months, one year down the track. Rather than rushing into business-as-usual and repeating the same pre-COVID processes that might not work anymore, now is the perfect time to assess your business and form new strategies to take you into an even better place than pre-pandemic.
This marketing recovery checklist includes the following:
- Map out your business and marketing goals
- Perform an SEO audit
- Use on-site announcements
- Send email newsletters
- Create offers to support local business recovery – and talk about it!
1. Map out your business and marketing goals
You’ve just overcome a business hurdle of unprecedented global proportions, but to hit the ground running Post-COVID it’s essential to be innovative and set realistic short and long-term goals.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- What’s the financial damage?
- What business plans will have to be scrapped post-COVID, which ones can be kept, and which ones can be adapted?
- What are others in your industry, or industry leaders, doing?
- What’s the new budget?
Confronting these questions may seem challenging at first, but business problems left unassessed (especially when it comes to finance) will only get worse until you face them head-on. So take a deep breath, tackle one thing at a time, and watch your new plan come together.
When it comes to your digital marketing strategy, it can be tempting to reduce all spends because times are tough. But, businesses that continue to advertise during recessions always end up better off than those who became paralysed and cease all spending.
Because your marketing dollars count more than ever Post-COVID, be strategic with your spend and use online traffic data to push the channels that your customers are most responsive to. Basically, spend your money on what works best for you! Need help with your digital marketing strategy? We’ll help you out.
2. Perform an SEO audit
SEO is critical right now. An SEO audit will tell you exactly how your website is performing and what areas can be improved to drive online traffic and attract more customers.
By getting the metrics on your marketing performance and online traffic, you can turn the data into an effective and responsive marketing strategy. Here are some things you can check, and how you can respond to them:
- Create or update your Google My Business listing (Click here to set yours up for FREE)
- Aim to rank for local searches with organic content
- Review traffic to your website and update your web design and content
- Review the metrics of blog content, social media posts, paid ads, and email marketing and prioritise the most effective channels
Google My Business is a free tool to help you market your business to customers, control how they find and view your services, and gain invaluable insights into how your website is ranking. If you haven’t got an account yet, now is the perfect time to establish your brand authority and inform your digital marketing strategy with metrics from Google.
For an SEO audit, support with Google My Business, and expert guidance on improving your website, talk to us.
If we’ve learned anything from COVID-19, it’s that communication is key. More eyes were on screens during lockdown, so businesses that were able to reach out to their customers and use online content effectively were able to stay relevant and connected despite uncertainty. It’s time to adapt your online platforms and use of content to prioritise communication post-COVID, and we’re here to help.
3. Use on-site announcements
As Australians adapt to life post-COVID, businesses have a responsibility to communicate clearly about how they’re operating to minimise infection risk and abide by government regulations around public gatherings and social distancing.
One of the best ways to keep your customers informed about any changes or recent updates to your business is to create an Announcements section on your Home page – or a separate Announcements page with a link from your Home page.
Clearly displaying regular updates will:
- Reassure customers who are nervous about returning to normalcy
- Show government agencies that you’re playing by the rules
- Establish your business as a reliable brand during uncertain times.
We suggest including the following information in your new ‘Announcements’ section:
- Altered business hours (if your opening hours are now back to normal, let customers know!)
- List of precautions taken to minimise infection and ensure social distancing
- Booking limitations
- Changes to the shopping experience due to Covid
- Anything else customers should expect before getting in touch or visiting your premises
As web development experts, we can help you update your website with an added Announcements section or a dedicated Announcements page – and we’ll show you how to post updates as often as required. Check out our Website Edit service and talk to our team today.
4. Send email newsletters
Email newsletters are a cost-effective yet powerful form of marketing, and marketing stats during COVID saw a dramatic increase in email open rates (which makes sense considering everyone is working from home and procrastinating). More personal and targeted than a blog, email newsletters send content directly to your audience.
This content could include the following information about what your business is doing to recover and support post-COVID:
- Industry research and insights to establish your expertise
- Advice for customers relating to your products and services to provide value
- Updates to your products and services to keep customers informed
- Offers and specials to drive enquiries and sales
- More personal business news and updates to connect with your audience
In a post-COVID environment, your businesses should consider using an email newsletter to update customers on how your business is responding or pivoting during this time, and what customers can expect from you over the next few months.
This is also a perfect opportunity to invite customer feedback: what might they need from you in the next few months? How can you adapt your products and services to be more useful as things return to normal? Asking for direct feedback, and then responding to it, is an excellent way to gain customer loyalty and implement successful strategies within your business.
For advice on how to write and send an email newsletter, get in touch.
It’s time to walk the talk. What we mean by that is, as business owners, it’s our job to lead the way forward supporting other local businesses so we can thrive together post-COVID. Here’s how you can boost community support for the local economy, and share your efforts so others can follow your lead (and remember your brand).
5. Create offers to support business recovery – and talk about it!
“Support your local” applies to everyone – including business owners. Local businesses need to band together and support each other to regenerate the local economy and thrive in a post-COVID world.
A great way to do this is to create offers in collaboration with other businesses in your area, encouraging customers to shop at other local businesses in order to gain special offers or discounts on your products or services.
This heart-warming demonstration of community spirit is popping up all over the world, as restaurants in downtown New York City banded together to offer discounted meals on a collective punch-card. As well as driving revenue for these local businesses, this incentive brought people together and boosted morale during this daunting time.
Get in touch with other small businesses in your area and brainstorm specials, offers, and discounts that will get customers backing their local community!
Once you’ve developed a strategy, tell your audience all about it with posts on your website, blog, and social media. Local newspapers are quick to catch-on to community initiatives and will want to share the story – and while this strategy is a great way to support other local businesses, it’s also a wholesome way to get your brand out there!
Marketing Recovery – An Ongoing Investment
We’ve survived the initial impact of COVID-19, but for most business owners the next few month and even years will prove challenging. These times require innovation, transparency, and teamwork as well as creativity and tenacity.
Despites is many devastating impacts, what this time has also taught us is the importance of: distributing consistent content, staying front of mind with your audience and being of genuine support for those you seek to serve.
Marketing Recovery Made Easier
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