Ensuring Customers Choose YOU During a Crisis
Crisis preparedness comes in many shapes and sizes. Smart decisions + planning can help prevent “business casualties.” Marketing a business during a time of crisis has to first begin with a crisis management plan. Let’s examine ways in which you can develop a crisis marketing strategy to ensure that when crisis strikes, the customer chooses YOU.
We’ve discussed in previous blogs the importance of the “pull not push” method as it pertains to marketing during a time of crisis. This begins with compassion when communicating with your customers. “Trends suggest that how a business communicates with clients during a time of crisis will directly impact the brand’s reputation for the foreseeable future. The goal is to design a communication strategy that leads with empathy from an honest place.”
Naturally, a crisis will push you into a fight or flight mindset. Now is your opportunity to adapt and be willing to try something new when it comes to your marketing strategy. We know that empathetic messaging is important. However, some trends now suggest that this messaging is becoming mundane thus losing its honesty. So, how do you begin that message to your customers?
Step one: Construct a crisis communication plan.
This will serve as an outline for how & when you intend to communicate with your clients, and the message you want to convey.
Focus on keeping your existing and potential customers updated and informed.
If your company has employees that interact frequently with clients, consult with them. They are a key piece to the puzzle because of their relationships & conversations with customers. Lean on them for insight into your customer experience - what questions do they have that you can provide answers directly?
Here are 5 suggestions to help you construct a crisis communication plan:
- Update your Google business listing so that when a client searches for your company they receive the most updated information. Include any special offers or messages related to the crisis at hand.
- Update your hours + other helpful info on your business voicemail.
- Create a newsletter or a monthly email that highlights useful + positive information, and positions your company as a helpful resource.
- Update your company website with a banner on the homepage that leads to a landing page or aggregate FAQ’s page that is concise and easy to read. Include a way for them to contact you directly online with a form + capture the client information.
- When creating content for these newsletters, think about what questions your customers want answered. Provide these answers in an easily accessible location. (For example, how can customers purchase from you? What is the best way to get in touch with you? Upcoming events and/or cancellations?)
Next, data shows that people increase digital consumption during a crisis.
Take the time to update testimonials from clients you’ve helped in a crisis before to create trust with a potential customer. Capitalize on this trend by preparing a solid SEM strategy & finessing your SEO for effective customer acquisition.
What is SEM? According to HubSpot, “SEM, or search engine marketing, is using paid advertising to ensure that your business's products or services are visible in search engine results pages (SERPs). When a user types in a certain keyword, SEM enables your business to appear as a result for that search query.” SEM strategies include methods like keyword research and analysis (Indexability of your website, popular keywords searched as it relates to your industry and business, and integrating these words into your site), as well as PPC (pay per click) advertising strategies through platforms such as Google Ads. PPC is a form of digital marketing where advertisers “pay per click” on their strategically placed ad. This is a method of paying for website visitors and potential customers versus relying solely on organic website traffic. Learn more about our Search Engine Marketing services.
Lastly, get creative.
Now is the time to bundle and put together packages that add value and incentivize a purchase. Be innovative in your crisis preparedness - focus on a positive mindset and problem solving. In what ways can your company adapt to the current situation to achieve success?