In the times that now lie just ahead of us, businesses of all types are going to become more dependent than ever on the digital strategy that they have planned. For many various models, this could be the deciding factor regarding whether or not they can succeed during the challenges ahead.
While some states and nations were prepared for this crisis and others perhaps were not, the many live events and gatherings around the world that drove placement and branding have temporarily vanished. The threat of the virus now spreading the world has created a roadblock for doing all types of business in person, and one of the only keys to any type of success will be developing thorough and expertly-planned digital contingency plans.
Across the nation in the larger cities, the distinct buzz and excitement of a trade show and exhibition was always felt days before the trucks rolled in full of tech gear and fresh promise! Companies that focus on business-to-business in particular had their hearts and souls (and capital) heavily invested in these events. Even though technology in many ways was still at the forefront of success, some smaller businesses such as construction and remodeling had seen success with constant referrals and reputation earned over time.
Large companies are now seeing themselves immediately thrust into a position that forces them to endure millions of dollars of vanished revenue due to canceled events such as Austin’s legendary SXSW. They won’t be able to wave a magic wand of any type to bring back the time spent in preparation, but some will see insurance and cancellation policies that allow them a different avenue of budget to re-wire their strategy.
It is pretty much a given that the digital avenue is going to be the very evident winning force, as people are working from home and quite frankly, stuck inside for an indefinite period. Many companies that did not even have social media in place are going to have to quickly move into content marketing, blogs, video, and campaigns that are headed by some of the savviest influencers and techies around.
When people are asking us what one of the biggest hurdles of the coming months will be, we predict that it is going to be your prospective clients shifting into the mindset of being not at all willing to walk through the door and physically shake your hand. Throughout all of the fear and negativity of the past weeks, there has still been a rather positive spike of companies needing a digital presence, including new channels of e-commerce and campaigns out there that uniquely “tell a story” to reach out to those working from home.
Since people are spending more time at home right out of the gate, there are marketers with the time and laptop-juiced resources to develop a winning digital strategy. One of the things we hone in on here at Farfetched Studios is finding out where your customers are online, and how different tactics will ultimately steer you towards success and revenue.
In some situations, a refresh of the web page will re-align you well enough to reach out to the consumer at home, but don’t be in despair if you find yourself starting from the beginning. Insurance is one model that will see a drastic change. Heading out to meet with an agent in person is going to be low on anyone’s priority list, and drumming up an online quote will be essential. Even though agents in the larger cities have already turned the curve in this aspect, there will be some left with a large amount of catching up to do for digital.
There is a window of opportunity here, and when the world gets back to normal, the normal allocation of funds to things like live events will once again see vitality. Efficiently replacing the opportunities that have been lost will also make any company more prepared to deal with tragic global events that shut down public outings in the future. Facebook Live will be a tremendous tool to incorporate, as it will “give back” a bit of what was taken away from that live arena element we lost so quickly.
Although it seems as if so much has been lost over the last few weeks, the accomplished strategist needs to realize that the customer has not disappeared, they have only shifted locations. And since the old saying “Home is where the heart is” still holds a bit of weight, there will be the eventual overload of order fulfillment, home delivery, as well as teaching and tutoring opportunities within the digital domain.