With Australia and the rest of the world still reeling from the events of 2020, businesses in all industries are feeling uncertain about the future. We know we need to move forward and adapt to this new normal everyone is telling us we’re in, but we have no idea what the new normal even is! So, with this in mind, how do you even start to develop a digital marketing strategy? The key is to look at consumer behaviour during economic crises of the past – like that which occurred in 2008. Here are some insights.
#1 – Make Value for Money Your Priority
Spending is what keeps our economy functioning, but when your unemployment rate is rising and your consumers are experiencing pay cuts, then spending is going to drop even though consumer needs stay the same. The fact is that people are looking for bargains, discounts and value for money.
Aussies are in a pretty good position, with unemployment relatively low compared to other countries, helped along by government stimulus payments, but it will still be a long and bumpy recovery to pre-2020 levels of retail. In the meantime, you need to know where you customer’s pain points are (their wallet being the biggest one of the lot) and show them where to get more for their money.
#2 – Keep a Finger on the Consumer’s Pulse
In order to thrive in 2021, businesses need to have detailed knowledge of what their target market wants, notice changes quickly, and react with agility. This means that you should have a very flexible digital marketing plan.
- Instead of planning your content for the year, plan it in quarterly sections.
- Constantly monitor and analyse your target market and consumer reactions so that you know what they are interested in, where new opportunities lie, and so you can adjust your digital marketing strategy accordingly.
- Be ready for anything. In uncertain times it’s impossible to forecast what will happen months or even weeks down the line. Instead, develop several contingency plans for likely scenarios, including increased restriction levels, changing consumer needs and even a return to normal, public life.
This Market Finder feature is a great tool for seeing what your customers are most interested in on your website, and tracking these changes over time.
#3 – Build Your Local Credentials
One of the best things to see in 2020 was the surge in support for local businesses from government and the public. People weren’t just unthinkingly using the business most convenient to them – they were making a conscious decision to make their purchases at businesses in their community that were struggling. People were proud of being part of this movement, with #supportlocal trending on Twitter and researched showed that 82% of consumers were happy to pay more on local products rather than go to a large corporation – an impressive number considering the financial strain many are under.
As a result, it is very important to build up your local credentials by optimising for local search, claiming your Google My Business page, building up citations, posting about your business on social media and blogs, and encouraging your customers to leave reviews.
#4 – Expand Your Reach
If you have been running as a brick-and-mortar retailer with a small online presence, now is the right time to expand. Social media marketing, email marketing and content marketing not only allow you to increase awareness of your business and what you have to offer, it also gives you the ability to reach a wider audience. With ecommerce growing significantly over the last year, consumers becoming more confident and comfortable with online shopping, and the increasingly competitive price of shipping, you can sell to almost anyone, anywhere.