The COVID Marketing Budget

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The onset of a global pandemic has proven to be difficult for all facets of business life. It has companies exploring new ways of reaching and communicating with their consumers, as the areas in which they once exceled could be essentially obsolete. This demand to shift thinking, reconsider new avenues, and work within budget cuts have marketing departments reconsidering their 2020 into 2021 strategies.

Digital marketing has been a vastly popular method of prospecting new and retaining existing customers. But, with the current reality, investing in many prior channels is simply not wise. And, an overly saturated online environment is diminishing digitals capacity to solely retain and generate sales at a cost effective and acceptable level. Not to mention the decreased brand loyalty which is promoted with many online experiences.

The smart companies are using this opportunity to redirect budget dollars which may have been in costly traditional media into larger, systemic, and automated marketing approaches.

  1. Omni-Channel Marketing

Communicate with your customers in various channels to ensure they remain loyal. Any and every channel you are not utilizing to market to your customers, opens the door for a competitor to do so, and diminishes your presence in their eyes. Amplify your reach and spend budget intelligently through the combined use of digital, social, email and print communications.  Major brands know experiential engagements are priceless for building a long-term connection. This is evidenced by live experiences created at events and community gatherings, the investment in programs surrounding lifestyle activities such as music, fitness, pets, etc. And, today, the absolute best physical engagement is the one in which your customers will feel safest. Extend your campaigns to a print world impression, and standout.

  1. Automation

Some people think marketing automation is about maximization of time. This savings is important when it comes to reducing costs. But truly effective automation is about the intersection of automation, multi-channel engagements, behavior triggered marketing on a 1:1 level, and the use of data from within the organization combined with external data services. The level of complexity can be a bit overwhelming. Imagine being a flooring company selling carpeting, tile and wood floors. A web inquiry could go through the standard path of getting a call or email follow-up. A more sophisticated engagement considers direct mail since most competitors will rely purely on digital means. Explore this scenario a bit more. What if you used data to automate the lead evaluation? A marketing campaign that’s engineered to score the lead based on home size, home value compared to local market, last known sale date, could be the difference of spending $2.60 per leads with the hope of high conversion rates or spending $8 on only the leads that will provide the highest gross sale and greatest margin. 

What’s possible will amaze you. The key to these programs is to build them to change when necessary, design them to yield data as much as financial results, and continually evolve them to be your competitive edge. Don’t give the competition a chance to have a better special or ad because you own the space of connecting effectively with all desirable prospects. Sure, you can let the competition have the not-so-great consumer sales. We don’t want to be greedy.

  1. Acquire Data

The organization and analysis of your data is an essential part of maintaining an all-encompassing marketing strategy. Data is a critical component to automation, IP Targeting and can not only save you time and money but also provide major returns. Determine what your ‘sales’ team typically does for lead generation, qualification, and follow-up. Determine how data can help automate that lead qualification process. Then invest dollars in the conversion.

 All too often, brands assume the only information available is the information they collect from a prospect. This simply isn’t true. Of course, any well engineered campaign will make it a point to collect more data, but in lieu of data acquired directly from the consumer or their behaviors, data is always available for purchase.

Like all negative situations, there are positive opportunities. Use the COVID situation to redirect budgets to a long-term, systemic, marketing program. To consult with our team, simply reach out via a web contact form or call us.