5 Reasons Why Small Businesses Need Digital Marketing to Survive the COVID-19 Pandemic
Here are 5 reasons why small businesses need digital marketing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
News updates have shown us that there is going to be a ‘before coronavirus’ and an ‘after coronavirus’ time for businesses.
We are also seeing what that means for small business owners. The income is surely going to be lesser for some time. Some small business owners reading this right now must be disheartened by the situation.
What will happen next? Is my business going to suffer forever now?
No, your business is not closing. It’s a temporary situation. And if it’s not going to last forever, it means that you have to survive it.
Take the example of China. They are up and running after the pandemic has hit them.
It’s safe to say that just like for them it got worse before it got better, it is going to get better for you too.
If your question is: “How?”
The answer is: “Digital marketing.”
And if the next question is: “Why?”
The answer to this question is going to be a little longer.
So bear with me for some trivia and good reasons to stick with digital marketing in these difficult times.
Why Small Businesses Need Digital Marketing to Survive The Covid-19 Pandemic
1. People Are Searching For You Online
As a marketer myself, I check Google trends all the time. Google is not only Google anymore. It has become Dr. Google. There are so many queries about or around coronavirus. However, people are not only searching for coronavirus trivia. They are searching for entertainment sources, essential services, and even grocery shops online.
Of all the times, the current ones are not when it’s just fine to hide online. It’s time to make it easier for people to find you online.
Many businesses have taken advantage of the guidelines that pop up on Google on the trending queries. They are also taking into consideration how people are now checking for you online even when you are a local store.
For instance, we have got a client who is into moving and packing business. As soon as words like “contactless’, ‘safe’, and ‘hygiene’ became the new normal, we changed our SEO game. We redid the keywords and we changed the website copies to meet the demands of the current times.
Use this time to gain traffic. It may mean posting about things that are not directly related to your business. But this is the time to help. People will only praise you for contributing to society. You may be losing business but people will still place orders and need things at their home. Do not stop your campaigns just adjust them to the current times.
2. Social Media Or More Precisely Instagram Is The Right Place To Be
Have you noticed how Instagram lives have increased a lot lately? Instagram is not anymore a break from your work. It has become as much legit source of entertainment as Netflix is. Influencers are now more active than ever. It probably is because people are not designed to be isolated.
Coronavirus has pushed millions of people inside. Whether the virus has infected us or not, we all are adapting to changes and trying to live the new normal. As trivial our current problems may sound, many of us are anxious. Guess what? This time is about being empathetic.
Start connecting with your current customers on social media. Show them who you are and what your brand is about. Promote your good deeds online. Do not be pushy about people buying your product and instead focus on creating a small and loyal community. It will only grow from thereon.
Instagram has started a whole campaign around supporting small businesses in these trying times of coronavirus.
They have introduced a sticker called ‘Support small business’ and it helps businesses reach new customers. Not only that, but it also helps businesses stay connected to the people they serve. So when they’re mentioned in the sticker, they can repost it. It is like showing off your business’ testimonials, just with more audience.
3. Local Stores Are Now In Demand And So Should Be Local SEO
As mentioned earlier, people are now looking for local stores online. They want stuff delivered at their door. They cannot go outside. But if you are present online, they can find you there without having to. Everyone is now dependent on local businesses for services and goods.
This time allows you to serve people around you. And if you do it the right way, you are also going to receive good reviews.
4. Digital Presence Doesn’t Cost Much
Traditional marketing is on the backburner for a while now. People cannot have a look at the ads outside in these trying times. However, when you own a small business, you might think that traditional marketing is an economic option. But it can become expensive in the longer term. You have to invest in it repetitively and it wears out with time.
Also, traditional marketing doesn’t allow you to track who all people have come seeing that ad. However, a banner ad on Facebook, Instagram, or Google does. Traditional marketing can be part of your marketing strategy, but it cannot be the only marketing strategy you are relying on for business.
Digital marketing is comparatively economical. And in these times, most probably, the most economical way to reach your potential clients and customers.
5. The Bonus Reason To Turn To Digital Marketing
At Ranking By SEO, we get a lot of queries. Some clients give up on its idea before even reaping the fruits of digital marketing.
I love those times. Don’t get me wrong. I love getting business. Let me explain why I love it when we get a client who makes it hard for us.
I love to give examples. The best way to understand how online presence gives you a brand voice is to look up to established brands. When you say that you are a restaurant and you are not getting any orders online or from your drive-thru at this time, you are probably doing it wrong.
Recently, KFC took to Instagram and shared an infographic that promotes their drive-thru and free contactless delivery services. They also mentioned how they have ‘industry-leading sanitation and handwashing policies’.
Now you may say KFC is already an established brand. But they started from point zero too. All businesses at one point in time have realized that their online presence is important. It has to be conscious.
And if I were to give an example of a local vendor, what about the movers and packers that I mentioned earlier? They adapted to the situation too. And with the rental situation in the US currently (a discussion saved for another day), they are chosen over their competition because they have marketed their strengths properly online, according to the current situation.
My final words here would be that I believe as long as a business, small or big, turns to digital marketing strategies consciously, there is no reason they will not get business and long-term value to their brand. The world will soon get back to normal and only the businessmen who are resilient will survive.
Author Bio: Lalit Sharma is the Founder & CEO of Ranking By SEO. He has been working in SEO industry since 2005. He can be seen contributing to SEMrush, Social Media Today, and Entrepreneur etc...