Welcome to the follow-up to our last post on integrating positive psychology into your marketing, communications, and business to succeed in the age of COVID-19.
If you haven’t read our first post, we encourage you to take full advantage and do so as we’ll be building off those principles here and taking them further with other helpful applications. . .
After taking stock of your existing foundation and strengthening it, your next focus should be on expanding your horizons. The instinct during uncertain times is to hunker down and focus on survival, but that’s not how you get ahead and certainly not how you thrive. Remember: uncertainty does not mean loss. Once you’ve taken a good look under the hood of your business’s operations and solidified your existing assets, it’s important to apply a fresh outlook on the opportunities now available to you in these times. This is the time to create profit from uncertainty. We advise pivoting to relevant new audiences outside your existing orbit. Think out of state or even international. Acquiring new customers or clients is going to be a key part of your Covid game plan, especially as business is migrating online and physical boundaries are becoming less restrictive.
Not sure how to get there or reach them? Don’t be afraid to set aside some resources to bring in experts on reaching those audiences. Here’s an important guideline to ask yourself: where do you want your business to be in three years? By then Covid will be long gone and we can start to see that future as a reality – and one we have to plan for regardless. That mindset should underline most of the marketing choices you’re making during this time so that you and your business come out of this primed to be above the pack.
One way to bring more clients and customers into the fold in a more measured way is to reach your usual target audience in different ways. Even if you’re focusing online ads on your usual geographic area or demographics, take some time to experiment with different marketing language, posting times, imagery and so on. You might be tapping into different segments of your audience that you weren’t reaching with your pre-Covid techniques as more things are in flux these days. Bonus tip: be sure to keep records of the responses and see what gets more engagement and what are the duds. That’s going to be especially useful for trained eyes down the road.
During Covid its also important to reframe your notions of success and failure going forward. For example, let’s say you decide to set up a new marketing campaign around a free trial offer. Unfortunately we know that most free trials won’t convert into masses of new customers right away. In fact, most people who engage in free trials will almost certainly not renew in order to avoid paying, even if they have a great experience and like the service. Therefore, expecting this is the wrong mindset to have and will position you into a losing outlook, which will give you the illusion of failure. The better psychological (and practical) approach is not to look at the 9-out-of-ten that might not keep a subscription or service once the trial is over, but instead to acknowledge the increase that you have received from the one person out of ten, and that this is now growing your base. You did not have that customer before you launched this campaign and now you are generating growth. In our last Covid-psychology post we discussed mindsets and soft skills. Here is another important one: having a growth-oriented mindset. This is quickly becoming a make-or-break, sink or swim intangible quality that is having a big difference in the Covid landscape, especially when so many understandably default to a survival mindset… and stay there.
Going back to the example of free trial subscriptions, another important aspect of these kinds of promotions is that they should not be done carelessly impulsively, or out of desperation. If you’re relying on that kind of offer to stay afloat, you’re starting off with the wrong approach. This needs to be part of a bigger plan, and just one tool in the larger belt in your plan to grow your customer base. On the same note, by keeping your eye on the prize with a firmly growth-oriented mindset, it’s important to also understand that even when your promotion does not result in conversions, it is still helping get your business seen in these times. That in turn builds brand recognition and, therefore, brand authority and trust. A name we recognize carries more legitimacy with us than one we don’t.
It’s also important to keep in mind that this is a numbers game. When you offer more free services (and are marketing properly), you will be seeing an increase of traffic that widens your audience pool and, (if executed correctly) will eventually drive more sales down the road. But it’s an investment, and managing investments requires patience and planning. Keeping this in mind and taking it to heart, some businesses during Covid are giving away not only free subscriptions but also free basic online courses related to their field. This builds recognition, good faith, and trust in their brand that they’re betting will pay off as the economy continues to improve with the distribution of vaccines and increase of spending and foot traffic.
Another online offering that is seeing a more immediate increase in sales conversion is expanding your payment options and, more specifically, offering a range of online payment plans for services. [Important] Bonus tip: We do not recommend doing this in-house. Unless your business is a collection agency, your best bet is to use reputable online services like PayPal and Affirm. Nevertheless, offering online payment plans for your products and services makes a big difference during Covid as monthly income is more uncertain. This reduces the boundaries and resistance to moving forward with purchases in a way that is better suited to the frequently-changing circumstances most people are experiencing during Covid. Additionally, we also know this is succeeding because there’s more confidence and optimism in the long term economy once the pandemic recedes, therefore increased investment in short term payments is a smart move all-round.
Finally, as we’ve mentioned earlier and discussed in other posts, this is an excellent time for any business to run well planned and executed online marketing campaigns. They are very affordable, especially when compared to traditional media marketing outside the internet, and they take advantage of the mass migration onto the virtual landscape that is occurring.
With these short and long term mindsets and specific strategies, your business will be better positioned both practically and psychologically to perform well during COVID-19, and then thrive beyond it. Keep tabs on our blog for more Covid and general marketing tips to help your business succeed.
Need help setting up a strong marketing plan catered to your business’s current needs ? Reach us at 866-DAVIDAXEL (866-328-4329) or firstname.lastname@example.org to start growing your business today.