Finding new ways to market and kick start business growth, or brand engagement is crucial as you tackle the competition and industry changes ahead.
These digital marketing tips will help you rebuild your online presence and maximize your business efficiency and profits in an environment where the detrimental impact of Covid-19 has been felt across the business landscape.
- Increase your brand recognition and get more visible
With many people working from home and staying connected through the internet, search trends are changing indicating a shift in consumer behavior and priorities. And now, more than ever, customers are looking for businesses online.
To capitalize on this, focus on Google Trends and your SEO strategy. By closely monitoring Google Trends and leveraging data tracking tools you will gain insight into your target customers’ search intent.
Refresh your SEO strategy and build your content and site pages around relevant keywords and topics your target market is currently seeking. This will help your audience find your company and increase your organic search.
Furthermore, make sure to update your Google Business listing with your current business status and operational hours. Doing so will create a better experience for online users who may be searching for your service.
- Boost your brand’s online reputation
When online users search for a company, one of the first things they look for are reviews. During the pandemic, Google stopped publishing new reviews and Google Q&A on business profiles which was tough on businesses as they were also prevented from providing review responses. In early April, Google started to republish reviews and review responses that were filtered during the coronavirus crisis.
To maintain a positive brand identity in the eyes of your ideal consumers, start building links and gain new positive reviews to improve website and online reputation profiles. Here are a few things you can do:
- Utilize reputation management software tools to monitor online reviews efficiently.
- Encourage existing consumers to share their unique brand experiences across online review sites and social media channels.
- Respond and fix any issues within your control quickly.
- Reach out to your industry partners.
- Re-engage with your past customers.
- Leverage social proof on your website using a review widget.
- Adjust web strategy for increased online demand
Redesign your website and make it interesting and easy to navigate for the online demand that will likely become the new normal. Be sure that when consumers find you online, they will want to do business with you instead of with your competition.
Since your website serves as your company’s digital foundation, if it is done right, more prospects can be reached, and conversion opportunities maximized. Here are a few marketing tips to help you adjust your web strategy for the impact of the coronavirus pandemic:
- Service pages should contain 1,000 to 1,500 words for organic search. 3 to 5 keywords with 3 to 5% density per keyword on each page page.
- Create engaging videos and graphics as it is a visual world.
- Make sure your site is responsive for all devices as over half of all visitors are on mobile.
- Careful with load time or visitors will likely abandon your site. Stay within 2 to 5 seconds load time, within 2 seconds results in a better stick rate.
- Keep your branding consistent throughout site.
- Enhance cyber-security with an SSL certificate that enables the website to move from HTTP to HTTPS which is more secure. Consumers are more comfortable and likely to engage when they see that the site is secure.
- Upgrade eCommerce capabilities to handle the increase in demand for orders, services, and shipping.
- Strengthen communication
This is the time when your prospects and customers need to hear from you more often. With social distancing in effect, the internet is the perfect place to continually keep clients and customers engaged and informed on current happenings and updates.
Strengthen your email marketing strategies and utilize newsletters to inform consumers about your policy changes, business updates or any developments. Also keep in touch with your audience and let them know you are there for their immediate needs.
- Establish a robust social media presence
Your social media channels can be a valuable resource for your audience if you provide industry tips and educational videos that they can engage in.
Live streaming on social media is a dynamic, intimate way to connect with your audience in real time. There is an urgency to a live post that demands attention. In fact, over 80% of audiences would rather view a live video from a brand than read a post, with YouTube Live and Facebook Live being the most popular video platforms (study conducted by Livestream with the New York Magazine). This is a great way to build trust and engagement on a budget as viewers crave authenticity or home-grown videos.
Remember to have empathy for your followers as the pandemic is affecting everyone around the world and in different ways.
- Host impactful virtual events
Events and conferences have been canceled, and there is no assurance that any mass gatherings will be allowed anytime soon. Virtual events and webinars are among the most powerful and cost-effective ways to host an event, communicate your stories and connect with your community. Although putting on a virtual event can be challenging, it can be well worth the effort. Here are a few tips to help:
- Engaging digital guests is quite a bit different than working with an in-person audience. Be sure to look at the camera. This tactic will mimic the in-person feeling of eye contact. Alternate by looking at the screen and the camera so the audience feels like you are really talking to them
- Use engagement tools such as screen share and solicit feedback in chat so your attendees feel involved.
- Content is king. In a virtual setting your speakers and content are your event.
- Take time to communicate before the event. What should attendees expect from your online event? How can you make them more comfortable with the experience? What should they be prepared for? Answering these questions using speaker notices, social media sharing, and “what to expect” updates will ensure your audience is committed.
Adding virtual events as a key digital strategy in your marketing efforts is a smart, cost-effective way to keep your audience engaged. Try adding it to your overall direct & digital integrated marketing campaigns.
- Video marketing
Video has become important on every platform and channel and is dominating social. In fact, according to Hubspot, 4 of the top 6 channels on which consumers watch video are on social channels.
Video production is more cost-effective than ever as you can shoot high-quality, 4K video with your smartphone. Produced in a conversational, actionable, and measurable way videos have changed consumer behavior. Video on landing pages has shown to increase conversion rates by over 80%, and the word “video” in your email subject line increases open rates by 19%. 90% of customers also say videos help them make buying decisions.
A staggering 85% of people prefer to watch Facebook videos without sound. A smart strategy is to create them with graphics and closed captioning so the viewer can effectively read a video when it is muted. According to Facebook, communicating value without sound must be done within the first 3 seconds to be effective. 65% of people who watch the first three seconds of a video will watch for at least ten seconds and 45% continue watching for thirty seconds. It is not easy but creating your own text overlay with editing tools such as Camtasia or Facebook's own auto-captioning tool can help.