Like most businesses, you’ve likely made changes to your marketing plan on a whim for the first half of this year.  With so much unknown about the future of COVID-19, more changes are likely to come.  Take the time now to plan for whatever scenario we may face in the coming months.  While there’s a promising outlook for businesses to gradually reopen over the next few months, a second wave of COVID-19 could quickly change how you market and operate your business.  Luckily, you have some time to consider what your marketing will look like in the fall. 

Based on my observations from helping other businesses over the last few months, here are my suggestions for making a resilient marketing plan.

Embrace digital solutions

If there’s one thing we know for certain, it’s that digital is here to stay.  Whether a second wave of COVID-19 hits or not, customers will still turn to online stores to make purchases. A recent report found that online shopping is projected to increase over the next little while.  So what does this mean for you?  Well, if you sell products, I recommend you set yourself up for success by creating or using an e-commerce platform.  Amazon is the world’s largest online marketplace, and their sales jumped 26% in the first quarter of 2020 due to COVID-19.  If you don’t have the supply to warrant using Amazon, a custom e-commerce website might be a better option.

Depending on your industry, you should also consider taking advantage of mobile apps.  Food delivery apps are increasing in popularity and industry insights show that usage will continue to rise.  If you can’t find an app that suits your business, consider creating your own custom app.  I also encourage you to take a look at what your competitors are doing to see if you’re missing out on any potential opportunities.

Plan for worst case scenario

What would the worst case scenario for your business be?  It may seem odd, but by including this in your marketing plan, you can provide yourself with a clear picture of what you need to do in order to avoid this situation altogether.  In order to make up for lost sales these last few months, you may have already started to think about ways to generate new revenue.  But as you know, not every idea is a good idea.

I highly encourage you to share your ideas with your employees or customers.  These are two key stakeholders that could have valuable information for you to consider moving forward.  Sometimes, we overlook certain threats or opportunities due to our own bias.  By consulting with these two groups of people in particular, you can get a clearer sense of what your customers want and need.

Get creative

Creativity and innovation will play a key role in the survival of your business in a changing marketplace  As you may have heard, some businesses shifted gear and began producing essential items in the midst of our current pandemic.  If you have the infrastructure to do so,  I encourage you to consider taking this route if and when the time comes.  For smaller businesses, this may be difficult to do.  Instead, consider what other options are available to you.  Can you partner with a competitor to share supplies and resources?    Can you offer a completely new service?  It wouldn’t be the first time a business has done this, nor would it be the last.

Creating a resilient marketing plan will involve being flexible and adaptable for whatever may come.  Need to brainstorm your options?  Our team at CreativeWorks Marketing can help you get there.  Contact us today to get started!