3 Ways COVID-19 Will Affect Digital Marketing Agencies

If your company partners with a digital marketing agency, then you may be wondering how COVID-19 will impact their business model, as well as your ability to work with them effectively. Let’s take a look at three ways that the global pandemic is likely to affect agencies.

Strategy

Every move a digital marketing agency makes is informed by their strategy.

How will it change?

The far-reaching effects of COVID-19 have impacted supply and demand online in nearly every industry. Agencies will be re-examining their strategy based on the following questions:

  • How have customers’ needs changed?
  • How have customers’ budgets changed?
  • Are we still providing the same value to our customers?

In turn, agencies need to ensure that their offerings still meet customer needs. This will be a major priority through the remainder of 2020.

How to respond:

Start by taking a close look at your customer profile, identifying their new pain points, and modifying your strategy accordingly. For example, as people stay home more, there has been a drop in “near me” searches and an increase in “delivery” searches. We have seen YouTube traffic rise by 15%, while ad revenue has declined.

Action steps:

  • Create a page on your company website sharing your COVID-19 response. It should be accessible from every website page, and should address all relevant changes to the business and what steps you are taking to continue serving your customers.  
  • Update your content marketing, email campaigns, and any other advertising mediums with your new messaging.
  • Create a campaign that clearly shows how you are helping your customers during this time. Track the results so you can run a follow-up campaign later on showing how successful you were in this endeavor.

Operations

It is clear that all organizations, including digital marketing agencies, will be forced to adjust the way they operate during these times.

How will it change?

People are going to continue working from home, even when it is no longer mandatory. Office rents are high, and agency net profitability is relatively low by comparison. In fact, rent is traditionally one of the largest overhead costs for agencies. But if customers stop wanting to meet in the office and staff continue wanting to work from home, agencies can use those savings to invest back into their business.

However, not having an office has drawbacks as well. Without common spaces, company culture, and team collaboration can suffer. Agency owners may face management challenges, and will need processes for accountability, time-tracking, and daily check-ins.

How to respond:

Ultimately, the decision is up to the agency’s owner, and time will tell how office norms change. But for now, video calls can be your team’s saving grace. Schedule calls for non-work related itemsreasons, like happy hours,  team building exercises, andweekly department check-ins.

Client Communication

The way that digital marketing agencies communicate with their clients will change, especially if they are accustomed to in-person meetings.

How will it change?

Traditionally, some clients prefer in-person meetings – especially for lunch, coffee, or happy hour. Unfortunately, that is out of the question for at least a while longer, so agencies will have to do their best to recreate those meetings through video calls.

How to respond:

Dress up a bit for video calls, and make sure your lighting and background are presentable. Consider creating a custom video background for your company’s employees. Fostering a professional environment goes a long way with clients, and video calls are no exception.

Conclusion

The impact of COVID-19 is wide and far-reaching. As we push through this crisis together, we will have to adapt in order to stay competitive. Digital marketing agencies should be focused on their customers’ needs, employee needs, and communication strategies. For businesses that continue to partner with agencies, know that we are grateful – and that your needs are our highest priority.

If you have any questions about how to keep your company’s marketing efforts fresh during this pandemic, reach out to Geraci Media here.

6 Digital Marketing Strategies to Guide You Through COVID-19

The COVID-19 outbreak has affected countless countries, communities, and businesses to a degree that we’ve never seen before. In these unprecedented times, one of the worst things you can do is to drop your digital marketing strategy out of panic. There are options you can explore that will keep your business moving forward and continue generating revenue.

Update Your Google My Business Listing

Update your Google My Business listing, whether your business has closed or remains open. Google Maps will display if a business is temporarily closed, and Google is encouraging businesses to update their listings. This is essential for local businesses, especially when “nearby” or “near me” searches are among the most common. To mark your business as temporarily closed, you must contact Google My Business Support.

Update your listing with your new business hours or closure plan, and add a Google post to explain how your business is responding to COVID-19. Do not set your listing as permanently closed!

Participate in Customer Service and Reputation Management

Companies like Facebook are creating platforms to keep customers informed on their COVID-19 response. As a small- to medium-sized business, you can use a blog to do the same. Create a space where customers can go for information about your business and your industry. Position yourself as a thought leader and give your customers informative, useful content.

Update Frequently Asked Questions

In these uncertain times, people need answers more than ever. Make sure your website fully addresses your customers’ most common questions and concerns.

If you offer answers to these questions, you’ll increase your chances of tracking higher on search engine results pages. This can boost your web traffic, click-through rates, and ultimately, sales.

Pivot your Budget

Buyer behavior will shift over the next few weeks and months, and you will need to adjust your strategy accordingly. This may require adjusting the amount that you spend on pay-per-click campaigns or changing the keywords you are targeting.

Businesses that use mostly traditional marketing methods, like print advertising and events, should pivot to online marketing equivalents at this time. Budget wisely, and focus on actions that have a measurable, short-term impact on your business. If your budget allows, invest in a marketing agency that can help you build a long-term plan.

Run Google Ads Campaigns

Letting customers know that you are open during this time is a top priority. If you are concerned that your customers are not getting the message, you can create a campaign using Google Ads or Facebook Ads that informs customers and reaches prospects that are ready to make a purchase.

As we see lower demand for certain products and services, now is the time to use online advertising to push discounts.

Engage on Social Media

People spend more time on social media than ever, so make sure to use those channels to keep customers up-to-date. Be active and online as often as possible and create a variety of posts to keep customers engaged.

Some social platforms have implemented helpful tools during this time. For example, Instagram launched a “Stay Home” sticker for Instagram Stories to encourage social distancing. Profiles that use the sticker in their stories are grouped into a special “Stay Home” story on the Instagram main page. Tools like this can help ensure that customers see your content.

This is an uncertain time for everyone, but remember: the long-term effects of halting your marketing efforts could be far-reaching, and could have negative consequences for your business that even outlast the pandemic. Remember to stay active online, answer your customer’s questions, and inform them about the steps you are taking to protect them, your employees, and your company.

If you have any questions about how to keep your company’s marketing efforts fresh during this pandemic, reach out to Geraci Media here.