COVID-19 has changed the way we approach B2B marketing – after all, it has to. The pandemic is unfortunately a huge part of our daily lives, and will likely be for the long, foreseeable future. As we continue to adapt to this new normal, marketing must also adapt along with it. The same techniques that previously seemed to attract the most engagement and effortlessly brought in clients and sales don’t seem to be working anymore. Consumers’ media habits have changed, as they reach to the internet to assist virtually every aspect of their day to day lives – but that doesn’t mean that marketing to them is going to be easy. In this article, we take a look at some of the best ways to approach B2B marketing during COVID-19.
It cannot be denied that your customers’ needs and wants have now changed. This applies to not only their product and service needs, but their emotional needs as well. They want to hear empathetic messaging, and they want to hear that the businesses they associate themselves with are not burying their heads under the rug and pretending that the pandemic does not exist.
Accenture.com tells us their first tip on preparing for the immediate and long-lasting effects of COVID-19:
“The leaders of tomorrow must pioneer new ways of hearing and understanding customer needs while staying close now and in the future as their market and needs change. To continuously nurture real-time customer visibility, proactively reach out with empathetic messaging, enhance selling approaches with AI-powered tools and deepen sales integration to nurture opportunities at scale.”
If you can find a way to be innovative through the crisis and still show customers that you’re here to offer them superior performance, it will have a long and lasting effect on your customer relationship – and could very well be the reason why you hold onto their business. How you make them feel while they’re struggling will prove to be a key factor in continuing your business relationship.
Roger McDonald tells us his views on how companies should be using innovative techniques in order to solve new problems on TargetMarketingMag.com:
“Much of it comes down to speed and agility, and the ability to change how you interact with existing customers. Consider this: One of my clients reorganized — in just 48 hours — the way they deliver customer service. They set up a service system combining virtual and on-site processes, which reduced service call times from nearly 2 hours to 28 minutes. More importantly, the new system addressed their customer’s desire to reduce non-essential physical contact.”
While it’s extremely important to offer support and sympathy during this time, you still do not want to follow the exact same tactics and techniques that your competitors are using. Even during a pandemic, find a unique angle to make your business stand out from the rest.
Sophie Bowman explains why coming up with your own unique angle is key to winning over customers who are bored of the same strategies on Forbes.com:
“Don’t follow the masses. The biggest mistake businesses make is copying what other brands are already doing. The result? Bored consumers who are instantly turned off by your marketing efforts. Focus on solutions. What do your customers need now? Go forth and offer your product or services as a solution to their problems in a humorous way, and you’ll win at marketing life.”
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