The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic response has made every organization examine its own ability to adapt during these stressful times. There isn’t a sector that’s been left unchanged by this environment. Some businesses may have been impacted more than others, but at some point everyone will feel the effects in one way or another. 

With this in mind, businesses have been forced to be as steadfast and creative as ever. One area this has been evident is in the spectrum of marketing and branding. It’s vital that businesses take this opportunity to reinforce their messaging to show their organizational flexibility during a period of extreme instability. Focusing on strong, consistent messaging can be the difference between a business weathering the storm and failing to do so. 

So how does a business shift its marketing approach during lean times to drive engagement, continue generating leads, and help bolster its bottom line? By adopting a marketing strategy that places a premium on resilience. This will lead to the adoption of marketing tactics that engage more potential customers and, in turn, lead to more business. 

Here are four best practices you can follow to help your marketing efforts foster greater business development. 

Develop a message that is relevant for today and tomorrow

Your brand message is about more than just your mission statement, though that’s a big part of it too. Your brand message is what permeates throughout all external-facing messaging to communicate what your organization is all about. It’s present in your logo, the language you use to describe your goals and values, and even the colors you choose to represent your business.

Your brand message should be consistent and it should be clear. Think of some of the most valuable brands you know — Nike, Apple, or Coca Cola. What do they have in common? Everything surrounding the brand — messaging, visuals, language — all leads back to the same core idea. 

Whether there’s a pandemic or not, your brand message should communicate that your business is in it for the long haul. It should reflect the reality of today and predict the future of tomorrow. How do you do this? By developing a brand that commits to your core values, has a clear-cut mission in mind, and feels congruent across all its platforms and materials. 

Update your digital presence

The pandemic has been a time of great turmoil and uncertainty for many. While this is unavoidable for some, it’s important to attempt to stay proactive and positive during a tough time. 

From a marketing standpoint, look at this time as an opportunity to hit the “reset” button on your marketing operations. Is there any part of your digital presence that needs updating? Now is the time to do it. That means ensuring you have the following: 

  • An up to date website that provides your potential customers with a clear picture of the solutions you offer with customer testimonials and evidence of why your offering is the right solution for them. 
  • A social media presence that engages your customers with genuine and thought-provoking content across multiple platforms, whether it be via LinkedIn, Facebook, or Twitter. 
  • Thought leadership content (blogs, podcasts, videos, etc.) that establish you as a credible authority in your chosen field. This material should be well-researched and delivered confidently, as it can really help set you apart from your competition. 
  • Establish effective “Call to Actions” on your website. Because potential customers are in different stages of their decision-making process, you need different CTAs for each stage. For example, a prospect could be in the research stage, so a video explaining your expertise will be more helpful than asking them to contact you. Potential examples of effective CTAs include: 
    • Schedule a Demo
    • Download 5 Ways to Market Your Business During COVID-19
    • Call for a Messaging Review
    • Watch this video

It’s true that you can’t meet in person right now. While some may see that as a negative, you can choose to see it as a positive. That also means there’s never been a better time to hold a digital event like a webinar to attract potential new customers. Right now more prospects than ever are glued to their phones and laptops. You’ll have to get creative, but there’s never been a better time to bolster your digital efforts in a way that can garner more eyes and more business. 

Create a business development drip campaign

Often times after you meet a potential customer, they may not be ready to discuss your product or service. That’s okay – you can put them into an email drip campaign. This allows you to keep your brand top of mind with valuable content for them. This way, you continue to provide them value and prove your worth as a source of solutions to their problems. They’ll consider this when eventually making their buying decision. 

Content for an email drip campaign can include a video on your product or service, a testimonial from a client about your product or service, data and research, or relevant tips and ideas. 

Adopt a client referral program

Finally, look to develop your brand evangelists in the form of clients or customers you’ve delighted in the past who want to spread the good word of what you’ve done for them to others. When you’ve done an effective job, you’ll want to tap into a program that rewards clients who talk about your successes to others and draw in new business. Offer discounts to clients who steer you in the direction of other potential customers. 

The bottom line on adopting a marketing approach that supports business development

So what’s the next step? Pull together your executive and marketing teams and organize a brainstorming session. With the best practices mentioned above in mind, identify opportunities to continue providing your customers with great service while also driving greater customer acquisition

Are you interested in adapting your marketing to help build new business? Reach out to REBL today. We’ve got experience and knowledge in developing winning marketing campaigns that lead to a healthier bottom line. For more on how we can help, contact us today.