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A couple of days ago, New York State lifted most coronavirus restrictions. As 70% of adults have had at least one vaccine shot and as the state has one of the lowest positivity rates in the country, businesses can resume operation at full steam ahead. Governor Cuomo announced that the state will lift capacity restrictions, social distancing, hygiene protocols, health screenings, some contact tracing and more.
From a marketing perspective, many businesses know that there will be a renewed need to spend a portion of their budget on marketing in order to attract both new and returning customers. But just how much are businesses willing or planning on spending?
Recently, Borrell Associates asked a panel of small and medium sized businesses about their Q1 2021 marketing and advertising plans. Specifically, how firm or how flexible their plans were for spending on a scale from 0 to 100 – 0 being most flexible and 100 being least flexible. The study found that the average “flexibility” of marketing budgets fell at 32.2% on the scale – meaning pretty flexible! What’s more? The majority of respondents (77%!) were on the “flexible” side of the marketing spend scale.
While there was uncertainty a few months ago about operating without restrictions, those questions have largely been answered. As a result, it is time for businesses to embark on a new journey with consumers and meet the increased demand for products and services. Business will look and feel a bit different as consumer expectations have shifted and evolved over the course of the past 15+ months.
While industries will face new opportunities and new challenges in this incredibly unique period of time, an organization’s ability to meet consumer needs will play a large role in their recovery and overall success.
So, what can businesses do now to capitalize on current and future opportunities? They can establish or reestablish authority in local communities and beyond by communicating with consumers, differentiating themselves from their competition and becoming an expert or voice of authority in their field. As organizations work to increase their influence, they will in turn garner more visibility and earn more business. Implementing a marketing plan and allocating dollars to an advertising campaign can assist with such an effort.
Below, we’ve highlighted a few ways to kick start separating your organization from the crowd and win back business lost during the pandemic.
For any business, the idea of increasing sales and earning more customers as a result of advertising efforts is intriguing and exciting. What organization doesn’t want more business?! However, appropriately planning your marketing strategy is essential to ensure that your hard-earned dollars and your precious time do not go to waste.
Diving into the world of advertising requires a few must-do’s and must-have’s in order for success to be achieved.
Determining a defined customer profile is essential when it comes to crafting a strategic marketing campaign. The “spray and pray” method of advertising is neither cost-efficient nor effective at generating new business. How do you know who your ideal client is? We suggest using your current clientele as a template for expansion. Avoid reinventing the wheel on who your target audience is. You’ve worked hard to establish a business that is best suited towards a certain demographic. Now, use this hard-earned knowledge to expand.
What makes your brand unique? Why should consumers choose your business over your competition? Being able to concisely define the aforementioned questions is critical when it comes to crafting messaging for your marketing campaign. In addition, determining where and how your competitors are advertising can assist in the development of a strategy – are you looking to expand into a new market or are you looking to take market share away from your competition (or both!)?
Sitting down to determine funds to allocate toward paid marketing campaigns is going to be a key factor in getting your advertising campaign off the ground. Defining your budget allows you to make decisions on what channels you can advertise on and how frequently – two key components of a paid digital marketing strategy.
Some things to consider when determining critical places to market:
The above can help you determine how much to spend and how to scale marketing efforts in the future to reach ever-evolving company goals.
However, if marketing funds are limited, especially during the early phases of reopening, there are a few workarounds.
Creating thought leadership pieces can help your organization establish the credibility and authority in your vertical that we referenced earlier. Generating educational content on social media or via a blog can help earn recognition in the community and can also be repurposed at a later date into targeted, paid advertisements.
You’ve defined your ideal audience, your company’s unique value proposition and your budget. Now it’s time to choose a medium (or two, or three!) on which to advertise. Research has shown that consumers generally do not contact a business the first time they see their ad. Another piece of that same puzzle is the fact that consumers are no longer present on just one channel or platform.
Last year, PWC found that the number of companies investing in an omnichannel experience increased from 20% to 80%. Quite the jump to say the least! Organizations need to consider (and choose!) more than one channel on which to share their company’s message or brand in order to retain a competitive edge.
Need some guidance on marketing products and platforms? Check out some of these tips to kick off your strategy.
Repetition is instrumental to any successful marketing campaign. Engaging users over time builds brand awareness and loyalty. A marketing strategy that remains consistent, is relevant to your ideal consumer and can be delivered on regular intervals is imperative to a company’s advertising success.
By strategically positioning your brand in front of consumers, you can reach a larger audience, gain new customers and increase market share. Get in touch with us today to learn more and deploy a comprehensive, effective marketing strategy.