Why you shouldn’t neglect your marketing, especially when funds are tight

From a creative agency in Brisbane, to you.

With the world in lock down, and instability in the market, many businesses and would-be entrepreneurs are playing it safe by laying low and pressing pause on their business goals and dreams. But safe may not be the best way of playing it, because brands that are out of sight now, will soon be out of mind, especially when things return to normal (whatever that is). That’s why everyone from creative packaging and brisbane design agencies (that’s us) to your local cafe are finding new ways to adapt their business model.

Although it’s tempting to run and hide from the craziness, now more than ever is the right time for businesses (or new ventures) to offer real value, and invest in their marketing mix to ensure they come out on top in the post-COVID-19 landscape. 

Why do we know this? If history is anything to go by (companies such as Apple, Microsoft, Snapchat, AirBnb and Netflix all launched during economic hardship), then there is a world of opportunities about to open up. As a creative agency in Brisbane, we study history to learn from the successes, and the mistakes, when it comes to marketing.  

Will you be ready? Here are a few things our super-skilled, kickbutt Brisbane creative team recommend considering when looking at your marketing budget. 

 

Use social media to your advantage
(but don’t rely on it!)

With most of us working from home, or at least spending more time away from the office, there has been a tremendous increase in the use of social media across all platforms.

Recent statistics have shown that time across Facebook, Messenger, Instagram and WhatsApp since the COVID-19 crisis has grown 70%. Instagram and Facebook live views doubled in one week. LinkedIn has also seen an influx of user activity over the past few weeks. You don’t have to be a creative agency to recognise that this is a significant uptake in social media use.

Now, as we see the use of these platforms continue to grow, is a good time to continue (or start) investing a portion of your marketing budget in social media advertising and good quality content. You can narrow your target audience down, and reach the people who you know will be more likely to engage with your business or product. When it comes to creating good content, using a good graphic design company in Brisbane can really add value if you’re using graphics, and the same goes for copywriting services.

However, remember that with increased use, comes increased competition for paid clicks and engagements. Take advantage of the increased number of users across the platforms, but where possible, consider combining social media with other channels like Google Ads or even direct print campaigns (if you can reach your audience). It’s all about reaching and engaging with your customers from all angles, and thoughtfully, to optimise your ROI. Not quite sure exactly how to do this? As a team of stealthy ninjas, aka a well connected creative agency in Brisbane, we’ve got your back. 

 

Assess your customer’s needs + make changes
(ask your creative agency how)

You must nimbly adjust to your customer’s changing needs. Be mindful that although their spending behaviours may change in the current climate, it does not mean that a loyal customer (or potential new customer) will head for the hills. 

It’s about readjusting your services and marketing mix to target their new spending behaviours. This is something a good brand design agency can help you with too. Think about what new customer segments have emerged. Most likely now, your customers’ reactions and behaviour will be based on emotion, and their spending behaviours will reflect this. 

Our friends at Harvard Business Review have worked out how people typically prioritise consumption, by sorting products and services into the following categories:

  • Essentials for survival 
  • Treats or indulgences where purchases can be justified
  • Postpone-ables where purchases can be put off
  • Expendables which are unnecessary

How does your product or service fit into those categories? If you’re not there already, look for opportunities to shift into the ‘essentials’ or justifiable ‘treats or indulgences’ and ways to market yourself as an ‘essential’ in these times. 

For example, the café down the road who in the past has relied on dine-in customers has now remarketed themselves as a bespoke grocer and is using social media to promote their ready-made meals, preserves, baked goods, and grocery staples. For our Brisbane based creative agency, we’ve shifted to online meetings and consultations, all the while carefully considering how this impacts our customer experience.

Think about your customer experience now, with many customers no longer able or willing to shop in-store. How are you making your customers feel valued and appreciated through your product or service so that they will consider you to be an ‘essential’ or a ‘treat or indulgence’ where they can justify their spending?

Reflecting on their spending habits, also leads customers to think more about exactly who they’re investing in. Customers are putting businesses under the microscope and will behave according to their own set of ideas and values. For example, we’re seeing more and more people choosing to support small or local, values-based businesses, steering away from the big corporates. Being a Brisbane based creative agency, we definitely fall into the locally owned business category (hi!).

 

Communicate trust

Part of your marketing mix should also include communications that ensure your customers feel they can trust your business in uncertain times. Maintaining a consistent and strong brand with your key messages woven throughout your communications will ensure concerned or worried customers feel that choosing your business is a safe and trusted option. This is something that we, as a creative design agency in Brisbane strive to instill.

Keep that feeling of familiarity by using reassuring messages that connect emotionally with your audience. Acknowledge the tough times and remind them that your business isn’t going anywhere, that you’re doing what you can to support them, and that ‘you’re in it together’.

 

 

Remember! 

This current economic climate will not last, but it will certainly change how things are done in the future. Continuing to remain relevant, in touch and aligned with your customer’s new behaviours, and marketing yourself to them, will help see you and your business come out on top, adjusted and prepared for a whole new world post-COVID-19.

Now is not the time to skimp on your marketing

The chaps over at Harvard Business Review put it perfectly… “during recessions it is more important than ever to remember that loyal customers are the primary, enduring source of cash flow and organic growth. Marketing isn’t optional “it’s a good cost” essential to bringing in revenues from key customers”.

Here here. 

 

Need help with your marketing? As a creative agency in Brisbane, we can help

Hey! You! Before your leave, please do reach out if anything in this article resonated with you, or if you have any questions about your brand design, packaging design or even our small business logo design services. We’re here to help, and are fully set up to host online meetings.