When the coronavirus pandemic threw an enormous spanner into the UK business works, the furlough scheme helped many organisations to survive, at the sizeable cost of pausing operations.
As businesses plan to welcome their employees back to the workplace, effective and reactive marketing is the key to getting those cogs turning again, for a fruitful return-to-work.
Upon mandated national lockdown measures, we urged businesses to try to market through this difficult period (if they were able to according to furlough restrictions), to ensure their brands remained firmly in the minds of customers.
If your business was not able to maintain its marketing throughout lockdown, putting a post-pandemic plan together can help take you from furlough to go go go!
Here are 10 things you can do to get started.
10 step post-pandemic marketing plan
Review your marketing strategy!
Whether you follow it religiously or will need to blow the cobwebs from it in order to read it, start here. Not only will reviewing your strategy help to refocus and realign your marketing, enabling you to hit the ground running, but there may be some projects/ideas within it that you could bring forward or refresh for a more impactful return-to-work.
Allowing as much time in advance of your return-to-work as possible, resume your messaging across your social media channels. Depending on how transparent you wish to be, you may choose to announce a return to the office rather than resumed operations, but touching base with your customers is essential. This generates not only continued brand awareness, but sales in products and services, helping the return-to-work seem far less daunting.
Explore email marketing
Ahead of re-opening or returning to the workplace, utilise your email contacts list for two separate marketing emails. One to customers, announcing your return to the workplace, and highlighting a selected product and service to help kickstart conversions, and one to clients and suppliers, helping you begin to reinstate the foundations of the business.
Entice and engage
Could you offer a deal/promotion to punctuate the return-to-work, and start driving sales again? Expose the offer via your social channels and use this opportunity to generate engagement with your audience and prospective new customers.
Publicise with PR
Craft a press release and reach out to local business press. Many of these publications look for positive business stories on a consistent basis, especially for their online readers. If you happen upon an angle for your press release and promotion relevant to a wider audience, you may even have some luck with the major news titles.
Blog your way to bigger places!
Utilise your website’s blog to publish pieces regarding your return to the workplace, your return-to-work deal/promotion, and projects the company is working on. Share the great things your employees are doing to drive the business forward as operations resume and share these blogs across your social media channels.
Providing SEO for these blogs, in-line with search terms you believe your perspective customers may use to find services/products like yours, will help them to rank well in Google search terms, driving traffic your way.
For smaller businesses without a designated marketing department, blogs may seem like a significant investment of time in a period of great strain. To share the responsibility, perhaps ask a team member from each business area to provide one. We assure you, they are worth the time, and if you hit the mark with the SEO too, you could see some great results.
Video and broadcasting
Planning a series of online events is a great way to reconnect with prospective customers and clients, and a vehicle to expose the value your business provides. Businesses offering services can utilise webinars or virtual events to provide details regarding each service, their benefits, what they look like, and what the user/customer/client can expect. Organisations selling products can utilise online events to demonstrate the applications, features and benefits of the items they sell.
Whatever your business, whatever the industry, positioning is key. By utilising webinars and virtual events to educate (knowledge leader positioning) or to interview others within your industry, you can position your business more strategically within your market.
A content-generating exercise in itself, Zoom (our chosen provider of webinars and virtual events) includes a record function, providing you with the video/audio files to post-market your events.
Tend to your website
When a business is hard at work, it’s easy for little website snags to go unresolved. Ahead of your return-to-work, take an audit of the company website. Check that not only your links/buttons are working, and that all video and graphic content is displaying as it should, but check that all images are correctly sized, and that all alt tags are filled-out. This will help speed-up your website and improve SEO.
Does your Team page need an update? Is your About Us section sounding tired? To see if your pages could be working harder for you, investigate whether your SEO score can be improved. Now, more than ever, we need our websites to delver results for us.
Ensure you’re easily found
Another hot tip is to log-in to your Google My Business account, and ensure your profile is up-to-date, and fully filled out. Sometimes it’s the little tweaks that make the biggest splash. For a nation shut behind their doors over the past number of months, the Google My Business elements automatically pulled-through when a company is searched for, are likely being consulted more than ever due to the uncertain business landscape.
A little help and optimism
Book a free marketing consultation with us! In an hour-long session, Founder and CEO of The Marketing Optimist Richard Michie, can consult with you to help overcome any challenges you are experiencing post-pandemic, or those you’d like to avoid when operations resume. Alternatively, you can use your free consultation to discuss a new Marketing Strategy and the goals you wish to reach as a business.