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Brand Distancing: The Dos and Don’ts of Marketing During A Pandemic

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DON'T: Be tone-deaf.

First and foremost, we recommend taking a look at everything in your pre-scheduled pipeline of content, whether it’s any type of ad, social media post or email campaign. If it was published right now, would it come off as insensitive? Start thinking about your platform and role in the community and how the marketing materials you push out can actually be of benefit.

DON'T: Go silent.

We don’t suggest that you go completely silent on your clients and customers. You’re going to lose conquered ground. By staying active, even if at a lower frequency, you are portraying leadership and stability of your company. Whether you’re having to shift your regular operations or your business is running like normal, letting your customers and audience know where you stand is imperative so they don’t assume anything. Once you’ve shared about the business side of things, it’s a good time to also share relevant content that’s educational, entertaining or even promotional (if it’s not insensitive and can be helpful) to keep some sort of normalcy and to give people a break from the never-ending stream of pandemic talk. We recommend staying away from content like washing your hands, virus graphs, etc. If you’re not in the healthcare industry, you’re not the expert.

DON'T: Launch your big idea you’ve been working on for the past few months...yet.

Do you have a big campaign launch, project or website that was scheduled to happen in the very near future? If so, it’s probably best to delay it until things settle down. It would be unfortunate to have worked for several months on a plan, graphics and messaging for it to get lost in the sea of noise, or even worse, for it to backfire and be considered tone-deaf. There may also be an opportunity to tweak those campaigns to better speak to the situation at-hand once things return to a new normal, which will ultimately be more impactful in the long run.

DO: Prepare for the upswing of business.

While the present and future are very cloudy at this moment, try to see some of the benefits of what this means for your business. Have you had a large project that’s been thrown on the back burner for a while? Have you been meaning to set aside dedicated time to plan and set goals? Have you been wanting to update your website, brochure or collateral but haven’t gotten a chance to do it? While things are crazy and you may be unable to function as normal, this extra time can be well-spent.

DO: Look for deals.

The demand for media is low; thus the cost is too. The same applies to printing, photography, videography, etc. From TV to radio and everything in between, costs are going down. If you have a relevant message and the budget to spend it, you can get some great deals. Running low on copies of your company brochure? Now is the time to print it at a reduced rate and get stocked up for the rebound.

DO: Stay targeted and efficient.

Search ads and remarketing ads are great, inexpensive ways to stay relevant with your audience because you’re only paying for it when people are actively trying to find your product or service. It’s easy to say, “My audience doesn’t care about _______” right now. You may be right. However, if you’re wrong, it opens the door to your competitors.

We know the state of this world is something none of us prepared for, but every time a new challenge arises, we encourage you to take a minute, be flexible in your strategies and aim to see the glass half full when possible. We will all get through this together.

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