As the marketing world continues to be dominated by news of the global Coronavirus pandemic, marketers are facing tough decisions about their marketing campaigns. We’ve rounded up 50 tips from marketers and business owners who shared their thoughts on this topic.

Don't be opportunistic, be useful

The global economy is being affected in such a degree that it is so hard to do business as usual. My advice would be to adapt your content strategy to the current situation, but not in an opportunistic or "salesy" way - do not focus on sales but on being useful.

Think of what ways can your content be useful to companies or your readers in the midst of a deep crisis. Since a vast number of companies and people are being hit in different ways by the Covid-19 pandemic, use at least half of your writing resources to write guides, advice, and solutions and do not promote your product or software while doing this.

Eri Panselina, Media Relations Coordinator & part of TalentLMS content team

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A big part of my marketing strategy as an immigration attorney includes ministering seminars at churches and events, which is a no-no at this time.

I am creating a full marketing automation schedule and evergreen content to be posted across our social media, as well as an aggressive social media live streaming Q&A strategy during this time.

The right strategy, in my opinion, is one which is compassionate and shares with your prospective clients your understanding of their predicaments at this time; one which is solution oriented, and offers useful content.

I believe this is a great time for individuals to invest in self-improvement through learning new marketing trends, looking at how people communicate during this time of crisis (tiktok everyone?) and to keep your head above water.

There’s an opportunity to grow on the other side, and humanity has never been this prepared to endure such trying times.

Renata Castro, Esq., Castro Legal Group

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There are two important steps business owners can take to reduce the impact of the coronavirus on their bottom line: communicate a lot and communicate thoughtfully.  

We all know that gossip and misinformation spreads rapidly during a crisis.  Companies that communicate the most often have the best chance of countering dangerous and misleading rumors and lies.  They fill the gap with real, relevant, meaningful information.  That instantly gives them the advantage of leadership because they are communicating when others are not..  

For product companies, there should be a steady flow of emails, messages, and posts about supply, distribution, shortages, and availability.  For service companies, there should be communication about hours, availability, limitations on service, new ways to receive service, and any other people-related messages.  Just as important, there should be a person designated to listen for people’s worries, concerns, and fears.  They should provide what information they can and answer questions people have. Communicating consistently means both sharing and responding.

Communicating thoughtfully is particularly challenging during a crisis because companies often don’t have all the information they need.  Doing it well requires the guidance of a strategist who thinks about each and every word that is shared..  They know the pros and cons of different types and methodologies of communication and can weigh options quickly.  Be intentional about having a communications strategist on your team during a crisis, and your investment will pay off in terms of positive brand interactions and the avoidance of missteps.

The timing of the global coronavirus outbreak is particularly bad for businesses that invest heavily in conferences and trade shows, which occur frequently in the Spring.  Many companies use these trade shows as ways to communicate with customers, partners, and prospective customers.  This opportunity should not be lost just because the show is cancelled.  Instead, smart companies should make plans to use that time well by having personal video conferences with their targeted audiences, sending them gifts or promotional items, and demonstrating thought leadership via webinars or eBooks..  

Finally, it’s important that you communicate just as often and as thoughtfully with your internal audiences as you do with customers and investors.  Employees and prospective employees are suffering just as much fear and confusion.  An internal communications strategy, including opportunities for people to ask questions, must be part of an overall plan.

Cass Bailey, CEO - Slice Communications

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I run a Marketing & PR Agency, so we are going through this in real time. At this time we are trying to position our clients in the 24/7 Coronavirus story. For instance, we have a client that makes iPhone Screen Protectors and we have published them as experts on cleaning an disinfecting your phone.

We have a client that is involved in stock data, so they are writing bylines about the market correlations between the Spanish Flu and Covid19. My advice is to try to position clients into the 24/7 coverage and not try to fight it and just carry on as business as usual, because it's not!

Jonathan Abramson, President & Founder - Bluetone Marketing & Public Relations

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If your core business isn't impacted by the current situation, this can be a great time to focus on marketing. People are online and on social networks more these days so you can capitalize on that attention. Most business owners have the instinct to cut back on marketing when times get tough, but you need sales and marketing more than ever when business is going to be challenging. I've increased my marketing budgets and efforts across the board to make a bigger impact to drive more impact and make up for the growth lost due to the virus. People still need most products and services and businesses are still operating. Unless your marketing would appear tone deaf (for example, travel) this is the time to level up to maintain growth.

Krista Neher, CEO of Boot Camp Digital

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We have drastically scaled down our marketing efforts due to decreased profitability during the coronavirus pandemic. We also realize that a strong marketing push during a global health crisis will come off as tone-deaf and harm our brand reputation.

Our plan moving forward is to test different marketing efforts small-scale on channels like YouTube and Reddit that we haven't worked with yet. We figure that it's a good time to test and optimize our marketing processes rather than do a big paid ad push like usual.

Calloway Cook, President of Illuminate Labs

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Revisit Your Strategy

What posts do you have scheduled out? What ads do you have running? If you have anything currently in the works that could be considered insensitive or tone deaf, now is the time to either remove or revise your messaging.

Promote Yourself Tastefully

  • Incorporate a few posts that are “business as usual.” Talk about your brand’s mission, projects that you’re proud of, products that you sell, etc., but all within the lens of moderation and consideration. Businesses and people might be stuck at home, but many still are shopping and planning for the future when they’re not quarantined.
  • Show what value you can provide for people while the pandemic is going on. By using your expertise and applying it to COVID-19, you’re acting as a resource to everyone out there who is scared and could use some extra help to get through this difficult time.

Plan for the Long Game

Not only is the coronavirus impacting our health, but it's also affecting our economy. This means that budget cuts might be in the not-so-distant future. Unfortunately, many businesses first turn to marketing when it’s time to trim the budget when really it should be the last place to remove funding. Marketing, particularly social media, is essential to cultivating a voice in a cacophony of brands fighting to be heard. When you remove marketing from your budget, you’re cutting your message off at the knees before it has the chance to reach where your customers are. Now more than ever, it’s time to invest in community building and expertise to make sure your business continues to stand if/when the economy takes a downturn.

Know Your Value

During the best of times, marketing and social media teams are under enormous pressure to prove their worth and the value that they bring to the company, and the bottom line. 70% of CMOs say that social media marketers cannot prove the value of their work. Revisit your tracking and reporting methods to make sure they are up to date and the data is accurate. Put unique campaign tracking on your activities during this time to measure brand awareness, engagement, website traffic, and conversions. If you haven’t set social media benchmarks and program KPIs, do that now.

Emily Lyman, Founder & CEO of Branch & Bramble

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This week, our focus has shifted from one of traditional marketing to more public relations. People are afraid, uncertain, and told to stay home which leaves many businesses empty and struggling. Our job has increasingly become one of assuring customers that these businesses are still open and taking precautions (curbside service, delivery, e-commerce, etc.) to keep themselves and their customers safe. We use many of the same channels like social and local media, but the message has shifted dramatically.

Patrick King, Founder, CEO of Imagine

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As a gym that involves live sparring, we are certainly feeling the impact of COVID-19 as we are closed for the time being. Lead generation is certainly not a great marketing strategy right now. What we have shifted towards now is the long-term health of our website. This means SEO and content creation.  

The steps within SEO are what allow users on search engines to find your company. And the best part is, the hard costs are very low. This is all about time and effort which is something we have an abundance of during slowed sales. This includes improving user experience, site speed, mobile-friendliness and other areas of on-page, off-page, and technical SEO. These efforts result in an increase in brand awareness and more qualified customers or leads coming to the website.

Related to SEO is content creation. For us, this means creating video content and instructional videos to keep our current club members engaged. This original content will bulk up our online presence and help introduce your company to those who may not be familiar with it. With current quarantines and social distancing, people will be spending more time online and the awareness and consideration phases of the sales funnel will be more important as purchasing goes down.

Sam White, Marketing manager @ Del Mar Jiu-Jitsu Club

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The best way to adjust the marketing strategy is to stop marketing, period. Times are too confusing to spend money and efforts doing any marketing right now. My concerns will only be eased when the pandemic news leaves the front pages of the major newspapers. There needs to be a diminishing of fear and confusion in the world at large about personal health concerns, personal food concerns because there is no food at the grocery store, financial concerns because the sock market is tanking and just a general toning down of fear and panic about the long term consequences of this pandemic.

David Reischer, Esq., Attorney & CEO of LegalAdvice.com

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With coronavirus dominating the airwaves, people are sensitive to advertisements because it can make you seem tone-deaf during the crisis. But there are some marketing activities you can do during the crisis that won't be tone-deaf.

While we wait to get through coronavirus, business owners have a fantastic opportunity to work on content marketing efforts, and SEO. You can write blog posts, perform keyword research, and perform many SEO-related tasks from anywhere as long as you have an internet connection, and there are lots of free resources that easily explain how to do simple SEO tasks that can have a big impact on your website's keyword rankings and search traffic.

For example, one thing you can do right now is write a blog post (or make a Youtube video or audio podcast) that provides relevant advice or helpful information to your target audience relating to the COVID-19 pandemic. What unique or specific advice can you provide to your audience based on your expertise or your business's position in the marketplace?

Additionally, participate in the coronavirus conversation across social media platforms. There are lots of trending coronavirus-related hashtags and topics that you can hop in and participate in. Don't be salesy, though -- just add value to the conversation and be a respectful, helpful member of the community. People will remember you when we emerge on the other side of this crisis and you'll be better off for it!

Jayson DeMers, CEO, EmailAnalytics

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We were in the midst of a brand new product launch - ExtraAim, a disposable urine guide for men. We had several conferences, presentations and introductory meetings lined up, along with trial survey plans. Everything involving face to face interactions came to a screeching halt, so we switched gears to focus on social media and email since most people are online and working from home, checking email. We also shifted our messaging to focus specifically on the hygienic value of our product and its usefulness in a shared bathroom to minimize contact exposure. It helps keep the toilet seat and floor clean by directing pee to the bowl and controlling spray or drips. It also helps men avoid having to touch the touch the toilet seat to lift and lower it for the females using the shared bathroom.

Amy Bryant, Director of Product Sales and Marketing at ExtraAim

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We had a big video marketing campaign locked and loaded for launch next week that we've put on hold until mid-May.

Our thinking is per Dr. Fauci, the virus should peak around May 1. So we'll give it a good 2 weeks of "good news" after May 1 about new infections declining before launching the campaign. This way we get a little ahead of the curve for when companies come back to work (hopefully).

We are meeting every day about this since it's such an evolving situation.

We are still producing all of our content marketing pieces on schedule though: podcast, blogs, pillar pages, content upgrades. The thinking here is that while our clients may be all distracted and not really looking to engage us on a project, Google's algorithm is still working. Also, we're still active on social since that's where people are right now. Sure, we wont be converting anyone, but we're still maintaining a presence.

Overall, I'm optimistic. This too shall pass!

Guy Bauer, CEO / Creative Director at Umault
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I’m sure you’ve been inundated with news of public policy changes given the latest updates on COVID-19. As you know public gatherings are getting cancelled or postponed at an unprecedented rate and businesses need to get more creative than ever to replace these vital interactions given the current social and economic climate.

Starting this week, our LA-based PR and influencer marketing agency, coded{pr}, has pivoted its annual festival season gifting suite to be an entirely digital activation in an effort to prevent any spread of the virus.

Instead of hosting one-on-one appointments with influencers, stylists and VIPs at coded{pr}’s LA showroom, the agency has moved its scheduled showroom appointments to virtual gifting sessions – where a team member will video chat guests one-on-one, tour the showroom and help select their favorite products for a curated package that will be shipped directly to their homes.

Given the unpredictable and often isolating conditions, industries must implement new, unique ways to connect with communities and keep clients’ marketing objectives on track. Using modern technology paired with creativity and resourcefulness – “Face Time” is not only possible, but essential to keep the world in good spirits.

Jamie Hecht, coded{pr}

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We've been advising clients that now is the time to double down on long-term marketing strategies. In times of uncertainty and downturn (which Coronavirus will likely lead to, according to the experts in global economics), the temptation is for companies to cut their costs, for example marketing, in order to remain afloat. However, this can be short-sighted.

While cutting budgets can help maintain a healthy cash flow in the short to medium term, the companies that actually do well out of economic downturns are ones who maintain or increase their level of investment in marketing - there is research backing this up from previous global recessions. The flows below shows why, using SEO as an example of a long-term marketing strategy:

Flow 1

Market downturn > cut/reduce SEO budget > short-term cost saving > gradual search engine ranking decrease > market eventually recovers > site is not in a position to take advantage of market recovery > long-term revenue decrease > missed opportunity to emerge as market leader

Flow 2
Market downturn > maintain/increase SEO budget > short term cost increase > gradual search engine ranking increase > market eventually recovers > site is in great position to take advantage > long-term revenue growth > opportunity taken to emerge as market leader

Plus, the effect of the second flow is amplified by the fact that most competitors will be cutting costs (first flow).

We've also been working with clients to identify changes they could make to their product or service to maintain, or even increase, sales through the next few months. After all, modern marketing is more than just reaching and selling to an audience, it is also designing a great product or service which fits the market in the first place (see Seth Godin's book, Purple Cow).

As an example, one of our clients is a training course provider in London. Typically, they provide courses in key business skills to aid career development, but with the coronavirus situation the interest in attending a training course in the middle of London has completely dropped. In response, they're now offering an online version of their courses, where delegates can attend through video conferencing technology like Skype, Google Hangouts, etc. It's proving a success so far as companies still want their employees to complete career development activities, despite working from home!

Sam Sheppard, Co-Founder, Cabana

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With the rise of the coronavirus, many brands have needed to revisit their marketing strategies in order to uphold brand contact with consumers. A big movement (with the isolation and quarantine procedures in place) needs to be made in the direction of utilising digital spaces rather than physical ones, and we have seen this happening in some areas. An example of seeing this digital movement would be with car manufacturers offering digital tours of cars in order to still make contact with their consumers, and then delivering the cars to consumers’ homes when they purchase them. Agility in this time is key, as brands need to continue to reassure their consumers and offer them a silver lining without coming across as nonchalant or inconsiderate about the pandemic.

Gary Stevens, Founder of Hosting Canada

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Content marketing is the way to go during this crisis.

The way to your audience’s heart is thru content marketing which is the best strategy given our current situation. You must be able to connect with your consumers even if it doesn’t have much to do with your products.. You must be able to reach out to consumers and really hit the soft spot; what do they care about? This way, you’ll end up having and building more loyal customers. You must be able to build their interest using your content and keep them engaged with it. This will help increase your sales, and gather customer insights.  

Leonard Ang, CMO @ EnKo Products

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The coronavirus has definitely disturbed the economic climate and businesses better adapt the way they communicate to their audience.

The first thing they should do is to stop advertising their product or service the same way as they'll come across as insensitive and selfish.

In this situation, I recommend a marketing strategy that includes 3 steps: acknowledging the situation, educate, and spread positive vibes.

Even though these exceptional circumstances might lead to some economic distress, businesses should acknowledge the crisis and show compassion. Show your audience that you care about what is going on and that you’re ready to help any way you can. Although, depending on your service or product, you might not be able to maintain any activity, showing your followers that you care will only make your brand more likeable.

Businesses should also educate their audience on ways they might be able to help businesses and others.

For businesses like restaurants, a way to help might be ordering deliveries. For other businesses who have no way to maintain any kind of activity, they should share about ways people can donate to relevant charities or how they can save lives like staying at home if possible. Take this opportunity to position yourself as a leader and give advice people will share and follow.

Businesses should definitely share positive vibes while staying respectful, as this is a very serious crisis that people have died from. You must find the right balance and share some good news and positivity. People won’t remember what you said but they will remember how you made them feel. Making your followers laugh, smile, or just feel good will also help your brand image.

Caroline Hoffmann, Head of PR & Coms at MarketOrders

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My team has significantly adjusted our marketing during coronavirus. We're a marketing company but many of our clients are shutting down non-essential spending, so we have had to adapt quickly. We quickly identified a list of potential clients that need our services now more than ever, and prioritized the list by level of need. Restaurants, retailers, and Chambers of Commerce quickly rose to the top. So we changed our strategy to focus on these businesses.

We believe that during a time of crisis, such as this, the most important contribution we can make is to help businesses stay open. Every business that can stay open is powered by people that jobs and for every person we can help keep employed during a crisis, we are impacting a whole family and helping us all recover more quickly as this passes.

The right marketing strategy for a business is:

- Responsive to the business environment

- Measured for performance

- Based on company values

Jeff Kelly, Marketing Guru & Founder at AssetLab Marketing

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At this time, it's so important to be empathic with the situation that has progressed so rapidly. Many of your readers and clients may be dealing with sick family members, business stresses and so many other factors that are coming along with this crisis.

When posting on social media, creating inbound marketing bound blogs, sending out newsletters, whatever you may be doing, be wary of the tone that you are using.

Ensure your clients that you are accessible and here for them during this tough time with any needs and questions that they may have.

Just make sure that you are staying relevant and communicating in an empathetic manner while ensuring your clients that we are all in this together and you will be there for them during this pandemic.

Samantha Russell, Chief Marketing & Business Development Officer, Twenty Over Ten

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The current coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis is one that many of us feel underprepared for. As a marketing employee,  professionally, I think most of us are asking the question of how you should move forward or do you continue marketing as normal?  

What we should think of one key element of a business strategy in response to Coronavirus is to avoid the temptation of simply driving short-term revenue. As a marketer, the most important question you should be asking yourself right now is not how can I sell more? Instead, it is how can we support customers during this time?  Focusing solely on profits amid the current situation will not do your brand any favors. In fact, it may work against it.

With many people confined at home under quarantine, what you need to do is Increase your app and online content efforts.  Marketing efforts should be focused on health and fitness that create relevant content to engage customers, such as videos of how to do simple exercises or make healthy meals at home to help them combat virus.

Norhanie Pangulima, Outreach Consultant @ Centriq

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At Drongenuity, our mission is to provide simple, convenient, and completely customizable aerial drone services to our customers. We serve as an integration point between our clients and a network of professional drone pilots. Due to the current situations around the spread of the coronavirus, our business is being affected on both sides. Clients are in a state of reduced spending and our drone pilots are understandably choosing to remain socially distant during this troublesome time.

As a small business, marketing can prove to be a valuable tool to reach potential customers. However, our campaigns are only useful if they prove to be productive. Due to the current situation, we have chosen to pivot our marketing campaigns. Instead of creating marketing content to attract customers now, we shifted our focus to long-term brand building. Current marketing projects are primarily focused on publishing quality content, enhancing our company website, and various efforts to gain brand recognition. The reduction in our marketing campaigns have proven useful in focusing on other aspects of our business and exploring alternative revenue streams.

After the current coronavirus situation is under control and life returns to its normal state, we have remained in a position to continue all campaigns that we put on pause. Feel free to reach out if you have any other questions. We look forward to reading the final article.

Dan Edmonson, Founder & CEO of Dronegenuity

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Burning my business' savings in this time of pandemic is a challenge since potential clients would want to sit it out for the meantime. But what's most helpful for me is our marketing efforts that can be done online. A lot of homeowners are thinking of upgrading their homes and swimming pools now that they're quarantined for weeks. This provides us with the opportunity to offer our product at the right time.

This is a great time to have more project planning and market research. Peak seasons often limit our planning sessions so talking things over at the comfort of our homes is something that can ease our concerns.

Mark Wood, Owner @ National Pool Fences

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As the coronavirus spreads, it can be tempting to lower marketing budget. Don't do that. eCommerce is in huge demand right now, and businesses are trying to run as usual. Think about how you can adjust your business message, target personas, and how you can help the community instead - giving up on marketing could cause more harm than good.

Sara Davis, VP of Growth at CanIRank

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Even though we saw big dips in the number of people searching for things like flights or hotels, we didn't see a drastic drop in Cost Per Click (CPC), but we did see a significant increase in cost per acquisition.

In other words, you can still roughly pay the same amount per click, but the cost per conversion has been going up for most industries unless you are selling necessities like toilet paper.

So what does this mean for marketers?

The best time to double down is when others are not. During an economic downturn, you'll find that you will have less competition, which means it is easier and faster to get results. In some cases, you'll be able to get deals, such as a potential reduction in pay-per-click advertising.

Just think of it this way: out of all the publicly traded companies in the United States, if the market keeps going down, many of them will struggle to pay off their debt, which has exploded to $75 trillion. It means some companies will either go bankrupt, get bought out, or get bailed out by the government. Some may be able to cut costs enough to pay their bills, but for most, it will be too late.

Again, this means less competition!

By being lucky enough to be sitting on some cash during the recession, this is the best time to buy out other companies. The ideal ones to buy are media companies. The more eyeballs to control, the more power to hold in the future. Plus, by controlling eyeballs, it gives us the ability to sell anything we want in the future.

In other words, this is the opportunity to strike and gain market share.

So when we see our competitors closing down or slowing down on their marketing, the goal is to double down. You may not see the most significant return right away, but in the long term, you will.

Every time the market goes down by 20% or more, it roughly takes 536 days to recover. As we recover, we'll see the revenue climb and the ROI from our marketing spend go through the roof.

Kaspar Noé van Dijk, founder @ Advertik Media

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The market is indeed crashing not only because of the COVID-19 outbreak but also the psychological impact it has on the minds of people. Customers are focused on health care rather than buying items from online stores, and there's nothing that can be done at the moment. We've adjusted our marketing strategy in a way that focuses on long term results rather than immediate sales by reducing the budget of paid advertising and investing more towards SEO, content marketing, and branding. We believe after the crisis ends, organic success will help us recover.

Ronald D'souza, Digital Marketing Manager @ Angel Jackets

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In the grand scheme of things, marketing has always boiled down to one common goal: to educate. In the face of the coronavirus pandemic, this has not changed. However, the context of how we achieve this goal has certainly changed. People across the world are wondering how COVID-19 is affecting their industry, finances, and quality of life.

With this in mind, brands across industries are adjusting their marketing strategies to educate people in the context of this pandemic. We’re seeing all sorts of content being produced like:

- “X Ways COVID-19 Is Impacting IT Departments”

- “How Will the Restaurant Industry Survive COVID-19?”

- “X Ways the Auto Industry is Dealing with COVID-19”

As a marketing agency, we work with clients across the board. People in all industries are desperate for answers related to COVID-19. And marketing strategies around the world are shifting to provide them.

The “right” strategy to marketing in the midst of COVID-19 is to focus on the positive; not incite fear. People are getting enough fear from the news. Your marketing strategy should provide a sense of hope and unity in these dark times.

Manish Dudharejia is the President and Founder of E2M Solutions

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While many companies are in a state of limbo, with team members working remotely and some business processes at a halt, it's important to remember that this won't last forever. So, what can we do in the meantime? The answer is to network as if the life of your business depends on it - and it just might!

If you're working from home, be sure to make time for outreach, establishing and confirming connections, replying to emails that you haven't gotten around to, and beefing up your online profiles and bios. Additionally, take the time to begin establishing yourself as an expert and write a few guest posts for high-traffic sites accepting unique contributions. Remember, every single link or name mention counts! And showing that you stuck the course during an uncertain time will illustrate exactly what your clients can expect from you, too.

Andrea Loubier, Mailbird

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The study from Pattern89 was conducted across 1,100 brands and advertisers active on Facebook and Instagram using Artificial Intelligence (AI) across 150 billion ad impressions to understand what creative changes are happening in real time.

Key takeaways from the study are below:

  • 600% increase in images and/or videos of people washing since March 11 (i.e., hands, face, body)
  • 200% increase of “cleanliness” related images / videos since March 11 (i.e., touching faces, sneezing, coughing, drinking, smelling, tissues, cleaning)
  • 30% drop in the use of “human connection” imagery on March 12 alone, with an emphasis on more social distancing imagery
  • 8% decrease in travel-related imagery over the past two weeks

Madisen Petrosky, Dittoe PR

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As a content marketing writer, what I've seen so far is a pivot in marketing strategy. Instead of hard sell content, a lot of companies are working on educational content geared toward their customers. For example, B2B software companies are publishing blog posts and guides about remote working and disaster recovery. They're mostly focused on retention and being seen as a helpful resource, rather than selling products right now.

Christine Parizo, Content Marketing Writer, Christine Parizo Communications

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Summit CPA Group takes a thought leadership approach with our marketing strategy. A typical day for the marketing team involves developing content – i.e. presentations, articles, and podcast episodes teaching business owners how to strengthen the financial health of their organization and teaching CPA firm owners how to successfully provide Virtual CFO services.

With the current pandemic situation, our strategy still involves developing content; however, the topics we are covering have now become very specific. As we receive questions from our clients, strategic partners, and other business owners, we are working diligently to address their most pressing issues right now.

Kelly Schuknecht, Director of Marketing, Summit CPA Group

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While it might seem as if the entire world has hit the "pause" button, there are a few strategies that successful, innovative businesses can - and should - still implement. One thing that illustrates that you're still focusing on your business is that you keep up with social media posting, as well as adding new content to your blog. After all, these are the sort of things that can showcase you as a leader and an expert in your field, and that definitely doesn't have to change.

When crafting new content, it's become quite popular to focus on solutions to the current situation of business. However, keep in mind that it's also advantageous to illustrate what your company can do to assist in those processes or strategies.

Alexandra Zamolo, Head of Content Marketing, Beekeeper

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The first step is to send out an email or post something online that your company is aware of the dangers of Coronavirus which is why you are taking steps as a business to protect your employees and customers.

Next, you need to keep yourself visible to others with the help of email campaigns and social media posts. However, these should not be purely marketing-focused where you offer your products and services. Share valuable information about the disease and what people should do to protect themselves. This way, you stay in touch with your audience and show them that you care at the same time.

Joel Almazar, Upgrow

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The one promotional mix channel most impacted by social distancing is personal selling. You’re not sending teams to expos and events. You can’t even sample consumers in grocery stores. What you lose in personal selling marketing power, you’ll have to make up in marketing power using other promotional mix channels.

Lonny Kocina, Chief Executive Officer, Media Relations Agency

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I manage a boutique digital marketing firm, so the impacts we're seeing is likely less widespread than others.

One of our primary channels for content marketing is email outreach. I've noticed contacts being much less receptive to starting dialogs they interpret as even approaching promotional in nature.

We've received a lot of responses along the lines of "how can you possibly being trying to promote somethings during this time of crisis!?"

We're adjusting our strategy to be more sensitive, mention that among our goals is to sustain business operations as close to normal as possible, and spending some extra time letting people know we aren't trying to be opportunistic.

I can't speak to the "best" strategy at this time as we're still gauging the impact such widespread focus on COVID-19 is having on our normal marketing channels.

Zack West, Novomotus

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Networking at tradeshows are a major cornerstone for both Forma and our clients, but with the virus shutting down major conferences and expos, we've shifted our focus towards growing organic traffic. This is a prime opportunity for businesses to improve their site, begin utilizing SEM strategies like Google Ads, or ramp up their content marketing strategies. There's no telling how long the outbreak will last, so it's imperative that companies adapt and improve their inbound strategy during this time.

Jordan Eller, Digital Marketing Manager at Forma Life Science Marketing

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During both good and bad time periods, the right marketing strategy comes back to what your goal should always be: "What do your clients need right now?"

Things are fluid right now, in everyday life and in the markets. Flexibility is key, but it's also essential to look outward and think about what adds value to your clients' lives at this point and time. This isn't a time for self-promotion or for sharing random information. This is a time to put your clients first, period.

If your clients would value a bit of morning levity, send them an uplifting email. Do your clients want some peace of mind in how you're handling their investments? Send out some periodic education and information about your approach. Do your clients need tips on how to stay sane while working from home? Send them! Make a proactive effort to provide valuable content, guidance, or advice that makes their lives easier during these uncertain and challenging times.

The bottom line is, if you have done the work upfront to really know and understand your clients' perspective, tailoring your marketing and communications approach will be easy. If not, you'll likely miss the mark.

Gretchen Halpin, Co-Founder of Beyond AUM

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During this time specifically, we believe that now more than ever it’s important for brands to practice awareness when shaping their messages and to use their social media platforms to benefit a world that feels scared and alone right now. We’ve shared several of our tips on utilizing social media channels during the COVID-19 pandemic below.

Revisit Your Strategy

What posts do you have scheduled out? What ads do you have running? If you have anything currently in the works that could be considered insensitive or tone deaf, now is the time to either remove or revise your messaging.

Promote Yourself Tastefully

  • Incorporate a few posts that are “business as usual.” Talk about your brand’s mission, projects that you’re proud of, products that you sell, etc., but all within the lens of moderation and consideration. Businesses and people might be stuck at home, but many still are shopping and planning for the future when they’re not quarantined.
  • Show what value you can provide for people while the pandemic is going on. By using your expertise and applying it to COVID-19, you’re acting as a resource to everyone out there who is scared and could use some extra help to get through this difficult time.

Plan for the Long Game

Not only is the coronavirus impacting our health, but it's also affecting our economy. This means that budget cuts might be in the not-so-distant future. Unfortunately, many businesses first turn to marketing when it’s time to trim the budget when really it should be the last place to remove funding. Marketing, particularly social media, is essential to cultivating a voice in a cacophony of brands fighting to be heard. When you remove marketing from your budget, you’re cutting your message off at the knees before it has the chance to reach where your customers are. Now more than ever, it’s time to invest in community building and expertise to make sure your business continues to stand if/when the economy takes a downturn.

Know Your Value

During the best of times, marketing and social media teams are under enormous pressure to prove their worth and the value that they bring to the company, and the bottom line. 70% of CMOs say that social media marketers cannot prove the value of their work. Revisit your tracking and reporting methods to make sure they are up to date and the data is accurate. Put unique campaign tracking on your activities during this time to measure brand awareness, engagement, website traffic, and conversions. If you haven’t set social media benchmarks and program KPIs, do that now.

Emily Lyman, Founder & CEO of Branch & Bramble

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When every lead creating and relationship building conference is cancelled, and business can’t go on as usuals, marketers immediately start to pivot. How can we still hit our goals and have a success year without the activities we, quite frankly, were banking on? You focus on digital, and you ask your teams to be creative, bold, and empathetic. Think about how your messaging may need adjusting in a time of uncertainty--is there something unique to your product that can alleviate the problems customers are experiencing? As marketers, it’s important to approach the challenges of COVID-19 with sensitivity. There is not a single person or business who isn’t impacted, so the right strategy includes asking ourselves “is this a tactic or a message I would respond positively to if it was directed at me?

Sarah Assous, CMO - Zoovu

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Our team are staying the course on our marketing campaigns which is content marketing and SEO. When the economy returns the whole, we want to be up there in search when our competitors are scaling down their marketing campaigns.

Stan, Selby's

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The COVID-19 pandemic has made people revisit what’s truly important - health, family, community connectivity, etc...and this creates an incredible opportunity from a product and marketing perspective. Products and Brands that can authentically support those values have a chance to find ways to communicate their story and connect to consumers in an very real and lasting way. Brands can, and should, create messages and online experiences that both communicate as well as assist in this ongoing crisis.

Stephen Fahlsing, Managing Director, Bonfire Productions

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Be useful or be quiet. This isn’t a CMO challenge as much as it's a CEO challenge. We don’t need clever communications or contextual advertising. We don’t need McDonald’s reminding us via promoted tweets that we can order delivery. We need businesses to step up and offer their core benefit to the public. This is a time for extreme empathy. What do you sell on the best of days, what value does your business bring to the world on a regular day, and can you afford to give some of that away, or otherwise bring a derivative of that benefit to people in a way that demonstrates empathy in this uncertain and wildly unsettling time?

You offer modern enterprise video communications? Great, give that away to all schools for free to help students stay connected to their teachers the way Zoom did. You keep people fit? Live stream your workouts on Instagram like Barry’s Bootcamp, who even had its own CEO lead the very first live workout earlier this week. Sticking with the world of boutique fitness for a moment, and perhaps it’s just unfortunate timing that the pandemic crisis in the US coincided with SoulCycle launching its at-home bike, but contrast Barry’s CEO guiding me through a live (and free) workout I could do at home with SoulCycle sending me emails about its bike I could now buy for two thousand dollars. This crisis doesn’t mean turning every business into a charity, but it’s worth digging deep to understand not what to say— but what you’re in a position to give and to do.

Kasi Bruno, Culture Bureau

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Anticipate a cash crunch - audit your ad spend and re-balance and conserve cash as follows:

De-index your terrestrial advertising (billboards, benches, buses, etc.) as you're overpaying for impressions on anything premised on people being outside.

Re-balance your digital away from branding and towards direct response (search ads over banner ads) as you need to prioritize cash-on-cash returns.

Decrease ad budget until fear subsides (look to the VIX (CBOE Volatility Index) as a means of quantifying "fear"; re-activate budgets when VIX is <20).

Capitalize on "free money" opportunities (Facebook is giving free ad credits for certain industries, governments are forgoing certain utility bills and deferring taxes penalty free, among others).

Chad Riddersen, Partner, Deviate Labs

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While the marketing industry is in fear from loss of budget from marketers, which is the fuel that makes the whole machine drive, there is another way to look at it.

In the face of reduced budgets, and therefore frequency to eyeballs, we are simply looking at an approach to content. Nothing groundbreaking, but authenticity in advertising has never been more important.  In fact we are seeing higher engagement on ads that are authentic and less “gimmicky”.

Richard, Shoreline Marketing

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My marketing strategy for my clients have been to "Listen, monitor and engage." It seems knee jerk, but it's the plan I'm working on to the best of my ability.

Listen: to everything that's happening, check with what the CDC is publishing. Look to what the city and state is mandating and calmly take that into crafting the right message through social.

Monitor: keep eyes wide open for any opportunity you can add value to. If people are looking for a place to find bread, direct them to your local bakery. If someone is looking to support a small business, respond to them. ADD VALUE.

Engage: Connect with all of those around you. Social media is the tool that is bringing people together. Use it wisely, connect everyone with the most accurate information at hand.

My strategy revolves around helping my clients and community. All I do is with the pure intention that I care about my community and I'm on standby to make sure everyone knows I'm doing my best to have their back.

Lastly, my help and hope from all my strategy comes from God's living word. We are all so unstable and the only foundation is the LORD. He is our rock and knowing He is control of all of this brings me calm through this literal storm. Psalm 91.

Louise Brewer, mic (ro) MAC (ro) Agency

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The COVID-19 Virus has made the landscape different in two ways, as of now. One, we have to work with everyone remotely, instead of just some employees.

Two, businesses have to reschedule meetings due to a lack of being able to organize effectively.

Besides these two struggles, we are doing very well, acknowledging that companies are facing a new challenge, and planning out strategies to meet their short term needs accordingly.

The right strategy is to create a short-term strategy that allows companies to not only utilize their websites and double down. The long-term strategy should be to use this time exert more energy to "bait their audience" with inclusive content that builds their brand. There's no better time for brand development than a time where you and your audience are all limited due to the current state of the market.

Stephen Akhterov, CEO - Something About Marketing

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Being in the travel industry, we’re in the business of hopes and dreams. Hopes for connecting with family, friends, and romantic partners and dreams of uncharted waters and amazing adventures. While these times are unprecedented, the marketing approach is not complex. First order of business is to communicate early and often about what we know and any impact that may have on our guests. Once we satisfy their need for basic information, we can use marketing to dispel myths and calm fears. And then can we have a little fun with social norms and get people dreaming of travel again.

Patrick Gunn, Co-Founder & CMO - VACAYA

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Having a "business as usual" mindset is a recipe for failure during uncertain times, as nothing about the current state of business is "usual." Entrepreneurs can still make money in this downturn; however, they must be empathic with the challenges clients are facing (i.e., transitioning their workforce to work from home, crisis communications, etc.) and be proactive in offering solutions.

Carlos Gil, Author, “The End of Marketing

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Our overall shift in strategy and recommendations we're making to our clients is actually pretty simple. People are scared, they feel alone and anxious, and we are encouraging our clients to let their customers know they aren't alone. Connecting with them via video conferencing, of course, this is the obvious shift. The content of the messaging is what we are trying to bring forward. As challenging as this situation is, and it is unparalleled, this is an opportunity for human beings to connect to one another with compassion.  The social distancing and quarantine is a monumental act of solidarity to give the helpers and healers in our communities the best chance to stay ahead of all this. So in our necessary isolation, we are suggesting to our clients that they connect authentically as human beings, not as vendors, service providers, or companies.

Norman Lavintman, Founder/CEO - Palms Boulevard

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Brand advertisers are going to have to massively  adjust their marketing strategy to deal with the situation COVID-19 is placing us in.  We are now a completely remote workforce, locked in to our homes and allowed to leave for only the essentials in life.  People are in fear of being able to pay their mortgages or rent, purchase food, pay bills, and not become ill.  People are truly scared. And while fear is a very powerful driver to take action, it also can cause many to completely freeze. Including freezing their interest in making that purchase that a brand advertiser intended to be made after showcasing an ad. Even if people WANT to purchase, they may not be able to.  Amazon is reducing inventory in order to only support essential products, retail storefronts are shut down by mandates, and shipping and delivery issues will occur as workers come down with COVID-19.

We never as companies and business owners or managers truly have a time to step back and re-assess. We can at least attempt to look at this shut-in time as a potential beneficial opportunity instead of a horror story.  Now is the time for companies of all types to look for alternative income streams. To use the time to examine all elements of their companies, and the roles within to ensure they are streamlined and be proactive in determining what has been working, and what is wasted energy.  To allow team members an opportunity to no longer be pigeon-holed into their typical day to day, and have an opportunity to shine with new tasks to helm, and strategies to develop.

There is no ‘right’ strategy at the moment. It has been a century since as a world we have experienced anything this massive, with the Spanish Flu.  We can look back at weather impacts like Hurricane Harvey, or terrorism with 9/11 when our entire country was petrified.  But this is the first time every individual, regardless of ethnicity or political belief, is at risk. There is no more of a common bond and leveling of society than that which we are now experiencing. We are starting to see brands tip toe into the foray with words of encouragement, trying to align their brand with statements of safety.  Companies are going to be tasked with ways to not only stimulate the economy by encouraging purchases with delayed payment plans, but to find ways to ensure revenue streams are generated to ensure the company’s own future continuance. Mixed messages are going to be easy to be made, and brands are going to need to walk a tight line to ensure they don’t turn off consumers.  It is a time for brand advertisers and the common man alike to find the ah-ha moments of commonality.  To be able to laugh at the absurdity of the situations we now find ourselves in.  And to find ways to support and raise up one another up.   Now is the time for brands to find ways to help, to educate, and to build brand loyalty like no other.  This may be from reduced fees, delayed payment options, or even free services. For brands who figure this out, they will be able to be all the more powerful in the months ahead when life returns to normal.

Stacy Jones, CEO - Hollywood Branded

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1. Remember that consumers are home and stressed — and that includes journalists, influencers, teachers, and other social media-savvy professionals. Consequently, any corporate missteps will be quickly highlighted and attacked online — more so than usual. Various missteps include not treating employees and customers with compassion, jacking up prices (even if supply and demand warrant it), demanding a government bailout if you’re a giant corporation, giving executives raises, or appearing to capitalize on a tragedy. (Now is not the time to advertise your hand sanitizer brand; better to show how your brand is contributing to charity.) So watch every step.

2. Conversely, appearing charitable will have greater resonance in tough times, particularly if it involves corporate sacrifice. The luxury brand LVMH converting perfume factories to manufacture hand sanitizer earned a lot of positive recognition. (After all, it would seem tone deaf to advertise luxury goods now.) Executives cutting their salaries to keep workers employed would also resonate well. Handing out restaurant gift cards to doctors, first responders, homebound teachers, and others would help multiple parties.

3. Keep distribution in mind. Even if you have a product in demand, consumers are having a hard time buying it, with supermarkets on limited hours, hoarders grabbing everything in sight, and ecommerce companies overwhelmed. Consider novel ways of distributing products — perhaps through independent coffee shops or restaurants that are struggling to survive.

4. For most retailers, it’s entirely about ecommerce at this point. Time to go through your online store and test for errors, stock with appropriate merchandise, and rewrite text that might sound out-of-date or insensitive (“treat your grandparents to a cruise!”). Be sure to extend delivery times, since the delivery services will likely be overwhelmed.

5. Resist sales. Even though the pandemic and the economy have consumers shell-shocked, it’s better to offer cheaper alternatives than to undermine your brand by discounting it. For example, in the last recession, Starbucks offered Pikes Place Roast, a cheaper alternative to their usual coffee. Well-to-do customers still paid full price for their usual fix, but those on a budget had a lower-priced option. Another option to discounting is to include extras with a purchase, such as a restaurant gift card.

6. Think long term. The pandemic won’t last forever. Consumers might be cutting back now, particularly for vacations and non-essential items, but when they can freely go shopping and traveling again, all that pent-up demand will result in a buying frenzy. That’s why it’s important to prioritize your brand (image and reputation) now through good deeds, professional conduct, and an optimistic attitude. Consumers will remember.

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Freddy Tran Nager, Founder & Creative Strategist - Atomic Tango LLC

Blended Strategy Group is advising our clients – both consumer brands and talent/content creators – in this unprecedented time that there’s a real need to be sensitive to the situation unfolding and that most of their strategy and brand messaging will need to shift to accommodate. While we are supportive of all brands maintaining their revenue streams as best they can in order to offset the potential losses being experienced, we are also of the mindset that this is a fantastic opportunity for brands to offer creative and innovative strategies and content that work for the greater good – whether that be through give-back campaigns, educational content or unexpected brand partnerships and collaborations, for example. Both brands and influencers need to be nimble and flexible in this time, finding ways to work together to create new forms of content, education and entertainment, that ultimately will foster consumer engagement and help to drive revenue.

Allison Statter, CEO, Blended Strategy Group.

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For a consulting business, use a "and-then-some approach" in your marketing strategy. When a new client signs on, offer a pro-bono service that directly helps that company alleviate some of the angst they're feeling from COVID-19.  For example, if you're working with a restaurant, offer to design a free social media template that they can use to attract more takeaway business. Make sure you offer a free service that compliments the scope of work AND has a dual purpose by helping your client build their business.

Olivia Kantyka, CEO & Founder - Executive Branding Solutions

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There is no "one-size-fits-all" adjustment. Marketing for an online video provider is going to look vastly different than the marketing for a brick--and-mortar company. The video provider will probably want to increase marketing efforts exponentially to reach people when they need their services. Brick-and-mortar companies should focus their marketing efforts on communicating to existing customers that they are still around and still offering services - and more importantly, how people can best use their services while stuck in their homes. Search Engine Marketing, both paid and organic, are probably the best investments now as they reach people when they are actively searching for products or services. That is where marketing dollars would most likely be best spent for most companies. Second, Facebook marketing should be paramount for companies whose products and services aren't typically searched for on major search engines. Right now, marketing is more about messaging than branding, so people need to be aware of that.

Tony Wright, CEO/Founder - WrightIMC

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Our marketing focuses squarely on helping companies navigate online challenges brands face when aligning internal perceived value points (be it in a service or product business) with public perceived value of the business. In these times of market unrest and health scares with COVID-19, this message doesn't change, and is only becoming more important as people turn to online sources for shopping and education. Content online is broken into two types, 1) authoritative or corporate messaging, and 2) validating or public opinion. Often these types of content conflict, but when companies operate with greatness and when corporate value is felt or shared well, these two types of content should echo the same message.

Devin W. Johnson, CEO - The Reputation Management Co.

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Like everyone else, we were in shock when this all started. It’s been really hard to process and navigate the whole situation. But of course as a business we couldn’t have just sat and waited for it to pass, we had to have a strategy not only for our clients but also for ourselves.

So we asked ourselves what is the right thing to do.

Since social impact has always been our priority, we decided to support small businesses by offering our digital marketing consultation services at no cost and make an impact this way. Our community is so important for us and this is the time to prove that. We’re all in this together.

Eylul Savas, Founder & Marketing Director - Lw/ND Media

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Create helpful content! Be a go-giver. Focus on what your audience's challenges are right now, not yourself. Remember that your character will shine through later on, as you help people in a time of need.

Ben LeDonni, Founder / CEO - Creative MMS

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Don't be Tone Deaf. Pause your pre-Coronavisus crisis messaging. Quickly reevaluate your go-to-market messaging before you go live. We're in a rapidly changing environment with this crisis. Stay woke and follow the macroenvironment narratives and micro-narratives in your targeted communities daily. Make sure your message is on point with people's pain points and be ready to make lightning-quick pivots.  Identify and anticipate those narratives and serve them with your product and messaging.  Don't be exploitative - disingenuity always backfires and will hurt your brand.

Richard "Rick" Schirmer III, CEO & Founder - ViralBrand

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More people are online now more than ever, and you don't need to have a giant community to help people. Have existing customers? Invite them to virtual workshops, set up conference calls, create a Facebook group so that your clients and customers feel like they're a part of something greater. Post on IGTV and have a broader dialogue about what your company is doing to collectively move us forward.

Jessica Korthuis, Founder & CEO - SOHUIS

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We are using email marketing to reach prospects. Also we are adding podcasts and programmatic advertising for our clients.

Shiksha Tripathi, CEO - SocialInsight

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It’s really difficult to speak with nursing home operators about marketing at this time. They are on the frontlines of the crisis and literally struggling to survive.

In practical terms, I’m focusing to better serve my existing clients through improving their communication and messaging during these critical times.

Additionally, at the nursing home podcast, I’m trying to provide the best actionable information possible. Even if I don’t know how/if it will ever net me money. It’s the Go-giver concept (Bob Burg).

Shmuel Septimus, President - SNF Marketing

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To generate leads for our business we’ve doubled down on webinars, blog posts and helpful content. We’re avoiding the Coronavirus topic because that feels cheesy. The early results are our webinar attendees have doubled in the most recent 2 weeks.

Our belief is executives are working from home and have more uninterrupted time to join a great learning session.

This is keeping the upper part of our pipeline full. We’ll see how it pans out going into Q2.

Ken Robbins, CEO - Response Mine Interactive

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My complete attention right now is to ensure this company remains viable and that our team remains intact. To that end, I’m preparing for an expected drop in gross revenue (the amount of money we have left over after paying “costs of goods sold” such as advertising expenses, web hosting, etc). Gross revenue what is used for payroll, rent, electricity, etc. I have to protect gross revenue.To that end, I am starting to cut non-urgent, non-required expenses. Some you won’t like, but remember the ultimate objective - to remain viable/alive and intact. If finances look more certain and stable later, we will re-institute many of these.

Erik J. Olson, Founder & CEO, Array Digital

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We know that traditional content marketing activities (case studies, white papers, etc.) often go by the wayside in times of crisis. We're looking at ways we can assist our clients beyond those types of projects, including by offering on-demand editorial support for anything they may need (editing emails, drafting internal communications, finishing projects they can't quite wrap up, etc.). We're also reaching out to corporate and HR communications teams across Google (our largest client) as well as at other client companies to offer our assistance since they're particularly stressed right now with messaging demands. At heart, we're seasoned writers and editors and we can support any type of communications (written and spoken), not just traditional marcomm projects.

So: To boil it down, for us our current marketing strategy is to examine at our skills and strengths and brainstorm areas where we can best apply those capabilities to our clients' greatest needs *now.*

Laura Bergheim, Founder and CEO, Wordsmithie, Inc.

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With almost everyone now working from home, it’s critical to adjust any and all marketing spend to digital. Digital marketing can produce the best leads because the consumer gets connected to your brand within seconds of searching for what your business offers. Also, believe it or not, people still need products and services, even when they’re quarantined. As Pay-Per-Click (PPC) platforms such as Google and Bing can rope-in business faster than SEO, it may be beneficial for many companies to either begin or increase their ad-spend, but not to forget about SEO as it is the long-term strategy that will set you up for future success no matter what happens to the economy years down the road.

Chris Kirksey, CEO, Direction

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I think best marketing strategy for this time would be “brands should see how can they relate their content/name to COVID-19 and make it relevant to the audience because that’s something that people are curious to know about and keep their content up on the feed or in their customers/audience mind” .

Kunika Rathore, CEO, Founder -theunknowns.ai

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Across the board, marketers will have to do what they have always done best – adapt to change. Marketers need to stay informed, understand the latest trends and insights, and be aware that it is NOT, business as usual.

The impact of COVID-19 continues to unfold, brands and agencies need to stay close with their clients and help them take a compassionate approach to their messaging and marketing strategies that will lead to longer term trust.

In the meantime, every business needs to get the right communication and information about the coronavirus as it relates to their brand. Update your website homepage. Update all of your online business listings (most importantly, Google My Business & Yelp). Send an email to your subscribers, and post an update on your social media channels. Finally, if you have a physical location, put up signage in your storefront with the same information on the precautions you’re taking.

Bernadette Coleman, Founder & CEO - Advice Interactive Group & Advice Local

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  • Adapt to the new online life: When the government says, "stay inside," what do you think happens? In order to socialize and sustain connections, more and more people will be online. And whether we like it or not, remote work will come with its fair share of social media distractions, so be there!
  • Implement a digital forward strategy: We once thought brand awareness may require printed brochures, boots on the ground, banners, swag, flights and conferences, but that is becoming less of the norm and will likely remain so once this storm abates. This is your opportunity to get lean, and pivot to embracing digital.
  • Raise the bar on ROI from marketing spend: Ensure you have the competitive advantage by 1) Having clear messaging and a strong value proposition, 2) Having a strong attribution model and effective data management, and 3) Continuously analyze and optimize on an ongoing basis
  • Focus on your local online presence: Organizations are shutting their physical doors and opening their virtual screens. You must optimize to ensure people can find you online, including what people see when they click on your listing on Google My Business, Yelp, and social media.  
  • Think before chopping your marketing: A Harvard Business Review study found that firms that cut costs faster and deeper during a recession don't nearly flourish. In fact, they have the lowest probability (21%) of pulling ahead of the competition after thee recession is over. It is important to think smart, strategically, and dial back panic as much as you can.

Seth Viebrock, Founder & CEO - O8

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I think my biggest tip is that now more than ever people just want you to be authentic and genuine. Don't be an opportunist but also don't be afraid to market your product. People are still wanting to purchase things they need and want so just be real and talk to them in a normal way. A lot of people are looking for things that remind them of normal life.

Jay Davis, Founder & CEO - Creatably

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Our strategy has been to focusing on letting people know we are still open for business. The key focus now for companies like ours is to let our customers know that despite all the uncertainty going on in the world we are still operational. We have sent out and will keep on sending out emails to our customers, updating ads online all focused on "We Are Open And Here To Help".

Chris Folayan, CEO - LinkCommerce

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It’s important in times of rapid change to resist the temptation to throw your strategy out the window and start scrambling to adjust your tactics. It remains to be seen what long-term effects these current events will have. So it’s less about rewriting your strategy and more about taking the time to ensure you have the right strategy in place to begin with.

The right strategy includes the things that we should have been doing all along. These are the same things we should be doing when we get to the other side of this.

Most importantly – we need to add real value. Think about the impact your business has on customers and other stakeholders (society and the environment among them). Now ask how you can tune that up. How can you add more value to their lives today? How do you make people’s lives better? Not just right now during this pandemic. But always.  

The next thing to think about is your digital foundation. If your revenue stems from product sales, do you have the e-commerce infrastructure in place to still serve your customers? If you’re a service provider, can you support your customers virtually? If you’re a non-profit, do you have a seamless digital donor experience to ensure your organization is still able to raise the funds it needs even when the world is in social isolation? Would a mobile app help drive customer retention?

Lastly, I’d take a moment to refine your messaging. In this era of automation, we often build our marketing programs and put them on auto pilot. It’s worth reviewing all of your active campaigns, content and assets to see how you can adjust your messaging to speak to people’s present needs.

Triniti Burton, Director of Marketing & Growth - Joybyte

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The $60B sponsorship industry is seeing huge changes with the cancellation of live sports. We are seeing an increase of brand sports marketing dollars going to social media and to the athletes. Partly because it's one of the ways to still get in front of the sports fan demographic and partly because athletes are stuck at home also and have time on their hands, may need the financial support and with them posting more on social media, we are seeing an increase in their non athletic interests thus brands are able to see more authentic partnerships e.g. Lebron James recently posted an interview on Instagram where he was drinking red wine at the same time - I don't think we would see this during the season.

Ishveen Anand, CEO + Founder - OpenSponsorship