Due to the spread of Covid-19 in mid-March, most of the countries around the world declared a state of emergency and every business in the country has worked to adjust strategy to prepare for both the economic and social challenges brought by the virus.
For b2b marketers who rely heavily on consumer experiences to generate new leads and develop brand recognition, the implications of the outbreak of COVID-19 have generated uncharted territory. Large trade shows and conferences in almost every sector have been canceled on a global scale, and even though some event promoters are turning to ‘virtual’ events, the relative effect of these types of activities on a company’s brand-building and lead generation efforts is greatly diminished.
Most of the B2B businesses have several particular problems to cope with the impact of COVID-19. Here are some tips on how to manage this changing environment to ensure that your brand continues to offer value to your consumers while building a potential sales pipeline for the future.
Understand The Challenges You’re Facing
As a first step, you should think in the long term about how your company could be impacted by short-term market losses, and then a longer-term recession or depression. There are some possible impacts that should be taken into consideration.
- Client Cancellations:Think deeply about your client base and how they are impacted by COVID-19 closures. If you sell exclusively to SMBs, you will definitely find that many of them are unable to function and thus unable to pay for you. In this situation, you can prepare for a significant number of clients to opt out of your services or not to pay invoices, which would result in decreased cash flow as long as there is no bill.
- Changed sales pipeline:Due to the sudden advent of shelter restrictions in the US, several businesses rapidly shifted their outlook in just a few weeks in March. A number of options that you planned to close in April might have fallen out of the pipeline.
- Variable close rates: Considering the volatile epidemiological and economic situation, some businesses are holding back on new investment decisions, while others are trying to move quickly. Hence, it is essential for your sales team to be adaptable with respect to the needs of any prospect.
Focus on Branding
While COVID-19 continues to grow and most of the people opt not to leave their homes, while they are turning to their smartphones to get news about the outside world. All these customers provide advertisers with a unique opportunity. Through concentrating on the delivery of high-quality branded content, you will turn your business into an expert in your field and make it right. By focusing on delivering high-quality branded content, you will turn your businesses into an expert in your field and put yourself in a good position to develop new business in the future. Although you’re not likely to see a major boost in short-term revenue, investing in your brand now lets you rebound faster as the economy improves.
Consider the Roadblocks against Tele –Marketing
The odds stacked against telemarketing have escalated in 2020 with the outbreak of the Corona virus pandemic. On 7 March 2020, the Governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo, declared a state of emergency banning unsolicited telemarketing calls during that period.
Banning telemarketing during the emergency phase of the COVID-19 outbreak is however, not an unprecedented act. This has been done before as a responsive measure when the weather is severe. The governor said that telemarketing during emergency situations could impede the ability of the state’s citizens to access safety information. Hence, tele-marketing is widely regarded as obstructive to communications. Any marketer found to be in violation of the prohibition can face political, legal and reputational risks.
Gear up Your Email Marketing Efforts
The roadblocks against telemarketing open the door wide for email marketing. Stock markets and the global economy are experiencing major losses as a consequence of the epidemic, and this has a direct effect on ad spending.
Email marketing is going to take centre place as advertisers and marketers begin to review their ad spending budgets. This advertising format has many advantages, and the current environment only serves to strengthen it. Some of the benefits to email marketing include;
- Targeted and personalized emails have 74% chances of customer engagement.
- In addition to that, data shows customers respond more positively to personalized emails than telemarketing.
Hence, b2b marketers should consider email marketing is the best than other forms of marketing to enhance customer loyalty and engagement during these pandemic outbreaks.
Consider Product Updates
If your current product does not serve an industry that is experiencing increased demand, is it possible to create one that does? Take a look at your SEM search query report or input from incoming leads and consider how you should update your core product to meet current demand. If you are able to upgrade your product, make sure that potential customers who may not think of you as a solution are proactively promoted. By keeping all these in mind, build a target prospect list for outbound sales and assist them with targeted display ads.
Adjust Your Sales & Promo Program
If you service an industry that is experiencing growth as a result of COVID-19 (i.e. healthcare, transport and logistics), then you are likely to see prospects looking to transition quickly to new on boarding programs that will enable them to work more effectively. Work with your sales team to push these prospects into the pipeline quickly. Also, consider offering a promo to encourage new customers to on board, but only pay for the first few months, by which time the business will hopefully be back to normal.