||IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON DIGITAL MARKETING
Wondering, what will be Impact of COVID-19 on digital marketing ???
The sad reality is that it is spreading quickly and will continue to spread for a while.
Did you know that we are getting roughly 13,000 new cases a day and it’s enlarging fast?
No one knows how many people will be infected or will pass away sadly, but it has caused the global stock markets to crash, which means as a business (or even a marketer), you will be affected.
The novel COVID-19 has already started showing its impact on marketing and economic all over the world.
Well, before I go into that, let me be clear on what marketers should NOT do
- Don’t exploit the situation
- Businesses are going to struggle for a while
- Conversions are also down for most industries
||COVID-19 pandemic-related lapse has affected a host of industries and sectors in various ways.
Part of the upshot has been the change in the behavior of Web users, resulting in some recognizable online trends for example—in organic traffic and conversion rates.
- Traffic has generally increased to sites in industries such as media, finance, and healthcare—and decreased for those in the travel, construction, and advertising verticals, among others.
- Healthcare, pharma, and media industry conversion rates have increased, while those for transportation, manufacturing, and travel have decreased.
- Digital marketing expenditures have significantly increased over the years. Despite reduced marketing budgets due to the spread of COVID-19, digital marketing channels will still dominate.
- Most brick-and-mortar events like fairs, flea markets, conferences, workshops, and trade shows scheduled in the second quarter of 2020 have been canceled or will be virtual.
- Future similar event plans this year are very much in limbo. With that, marketers are seeking other venues to spend their marketing dollars. They need to continue to build their brands and generate the required leads and sales.
- consumers hunkered down at home to avoid contracting coronavirus are turning to online shopping for products that they traditionally bought in stores.
- This will provide online retailers better returns on their online ads, boosting online marketing expenditures.
||Why small businesses need a Digital Marketing Strategy?- Especially in the pandemic
The internet revolution that took place in the 90s has created many unicorn companies like Google, Amazon, and Facebook, ushering the way to online marketing, socializing, and interacting. Interestingly, these are the companies that are suffering the least during the COVID-19 economic crisis. Amazon is even prospering during these difficult times with its stock Amazon reaching all-time highs! With over $600 billion of products and services sold online in the U.S. alone in 2019, no one can ignore the importance of digital channels.
Even if you are not selling your products online:
- you must consider digital marketing as a plausible scalable engine of growth for your company.
- This engine of growth is made of many cylinders, each representing a digital channel.
- Ideally, you want every channel to be fine-tuned with the others to deliver the most robust and efficient result for your business.
- Abundant in the digital world– you can track all your steps, optimize them, streamline your processes, and affect your key performance indicators (KPIs.)
The purpose of your digital marketing strategy is to channel traffic to your website or social media pages, engage your target audience, and convert them to leads and sales.
||What Is Unique About Digital Marketing?
A digital marketing company adds two very important elements of traditional marketing. First, it offers new marketing channels that are entirely online and therefore immune to the COVID-19 social distancing consequences. Second, customers leave a forensic trail of evidence in the form of digital data that enables storing, tracking, and monetizing every marketing campaign through its channels.
With an enormous amount of data at your disposal, you can make better-informed campaign decisions, particularly in this time of crisis when every dollar matters.
What Are the Digital Channels?
If you have not ventured into digital marketing yet, here is a summary of the digital channels available as categorized by Google. The primary function is to drive traffic to your website or online products:
1. Organic Search
This is when someone enters a set of words or voice prompts into a search engine and consequently gets directed to online content. When one visits that content, it is considered organic traffic. The site owner does not have to pay a fee to the search engine company for this traffic.
For organic traffic to materialize, much valuable and relevant content creation and search engine optimization (SEO) work need to take place. This often takes months if not years to materialize. So organic traffic may not be the short term solution that you are seeking while your clients are in lockdown mode.
These are users directly visiting your site. Direct traffic is a function of brand building for your company, products, or services. The brand building of your website takes time to accomplish. It is however never too late to start, particularly if you already built a recognized brand.
Social media platforms include Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Twitter. When people are checking their social media pages, they may see a posting about your company, product. When they click on it, it will take them to your website. This traffic is tagged as social traffic.
Social traffic is not hard to build, but it requires the creation of frequent relevant and engaging content. If your business has a good client base that loves your product, you can stay in touch with them on social media by reminding them of your product’s value and engaging them with attractive content or offers.
This is the traffic generated by your outbound email campaigns and email interactions. With more people confined to their homes, they are more likely to read their emails. Email traffic is the least costly and can be very effective when done correctly. Leverage your email list as much as you can during this lockdown. But be sensitive to the current situation.
This is referred traffic from one website to another. When backlinks and citations are present on others’ sites back to your site, they will generate traffic flow to your site.
Link building is the most ignored digital channel, yet one of the most important ones. Backlinks are critically important due not only to the traffic they generate but the authority they create for your site.
You can use your downtime to affect the authority of your website by proactively pursuing backlinks from relevant high authority websites to yours. This is PR work that can generate huge dividends for you during and after the lockdown.
6. Paid Search
This includes banner ads, Pay Per Click, social media posts boosts, GeoMarketing, GeoFencing, etc. Unlike organic traffic, they require you to pay for each ad, each display, each visit, or each conversion.
While GeoMarketing and GeoFencing should take a backseat during this lockdown, you should consider investing the bulk of your marketing dollars in paid advertising. It is the fastest and easiest, yet costly, way to direct traffic to your website and products.
7. Other channels include affiliate programs and third-party resellers like Groupon, Rakuten, Amazon, eBay, and Etsy
Consider adding online affiliates to promote your products and services. You will have to give up a percentage on each sale that comes through these channels. But that may be better than paying upfront for ads when your cash flow is dwindling.
Also, if you are having difficulties directing traffic to your website,
why don’t you sell your products through the sites that garner most of the traffic? The top 3 online resellers are Amazon, eBay, and Etsy.
||Impact of Covid-19 On Content Marketers:
According to the Content Marketing Industry analysis by Research Dive, the global market accounted for $36,786.6 million in 2018 and is expected to reach $107,540.6 million by 2026, increasing at a rate of 14.3% CAGR.
Five Forces Analysis for Content Marketing Industry
• Bargaining power of suppliers
The Content Marketing Industry has a high concentration of large, medium, and small-scale dealers. The changing costs of the products from one dealer to others are predicted to be high.
The bargaining power of suppliers is High.
• Bargaining power of consumers
The presence of a large number of customers and the complexity in finding precise content for marketing are resulting in High bargaining power of the customer
• The threat of new entrants
The cost associated with Content Marketing Industry is lower than that of traditional systems. This aspect for the Content Marketing Industry is diversified, owing to wide applications from end-users.
The threat of new entrants is high.
• Threat of substitutes
The content marketers have very fewer substitutes for any product and technology, resulting in low shifting costs for customers.
The threat of substitutes is low.
• Competitive rivalry in the industry
This market contains a high concentration of large, medium, and small-sized players. Most of the participants are following the same approaches to the development of technologies.
The competitive rivalry in the industry is high.
To explore more about the impact of COVID-19 on content marketing, check out the link below:
Check out how increasing adoption of content marketing is significantly driving the content marketing industry growth:
||Covid-19 Impact: Survival of The Indian Startup Ecosystem at Stake
The startup ecosystem in India is facing its biggest challenge yet, with its very survival at stake due to the COVID-19 crisis, according to a Nasscom survey, which showed that 70 percent of startups have less than three months of cash runway.
The industry body’s month-long e-survey, which was conducted to study the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on Indian startups, found that around 40 percent of startups have either temporarily shut down operations or are on the verge of shutting down.
“The growth story of the Indian tech industry, specifically the startup ecosystem, has been often repeated with many countries emulating its success mantra… Out of the blue, this flourishing growth saga has suddenly been hit by a roadblock: the COVID roadblock. While governments have been working diligently to protect and save human lives, businesses have been hit and small businesses and startups have been the most affected,” says Nasscom President Debjani Ghosh.
Impact on startup revenues:
- As demand came to a standstill during the lockdown, startup revenues have been hit hard, forcing many businesses to either shut down or transform their business models altogether to withstand the crisis.
- According to the Nasscom survey, over 90 percent of startups face revenue declines. The decline in revenues is expected to be as steep as over 80 percent for at least 34 percent of startups.
- Travel and transportation startups expect revenues to decline by more than 40 percent, as changes in consumption and perception of these industries will mean that business activity in these industries will not return to pre-pandemic levels.
It’s not just revenues that are taking a hit, the impact on startup funding is also being felt across sectors.
Read more at:
- At least 65 percent of startups are facing “significant negative impact” on funding due to the COVID-19 crisis, with most early-stage startups facing a major funding crunch.
“Funding shortage is being felt by most startups and can affect long-term sustainability,” Nasscom analysts wrote in their report.
To combat the funding crunch, startups are resorting to several measures such as seeking government support, loans from banks and non-banking financial institutions, and capital infusions from existing and new investors, the survey showed.
Government support needed Two-thirds of all startups surveyed to believe that the COVID-19 impact will last up to a year, with a majority seeking immediate government support in the form of favorable policies, easing regulations, partnership opportunities, and reimbursements on immediately fixed costs, among others.
||Impact of COVID-19 On Entrepreneurship In India:
Entrepreneurs, in the face of the worldwide COVID-19 pandemic, must face a new reality: it is not only a huge sanitary and health crisis affecting millions or even billions of people all over the world but also an unprecedented downturn on the global economy revealing its breakability and fundamentals.
The government, public health, and economic responses in India are tremendously different if you are an entrepreneur based in the USA or Europe.
- The low-cost model where China and India, are the worldwide manufacturers will be ended.
- Globalization as well.
- This crisis will change the relationships between countries and states, new challenges, new stakes, new dangers, new threats (health and climate).
- Governments must and will demand to be independent and autonomous with critical medical supplies and medicines to reduce future vulnerabilities.
- A world less open and probably less free is to be expected based on examples of person tracking and facial recognition in countries like Korea, Singapore, and Taiwan.
With containment in the main parts of India, new needs leading to new opportunities for entrepreneurship in India will arise. New business models, new offers in dematerialization must be invented. In the coming years, the new king of the world will be the “Amazon of dematerialization” and Entrepreneurs will be the ones who will implement this new world.
After the COVID-19 crisis the lessons learned will be:
- The travel limitation of goods and business travelers (more remote working and remote meetings) due to the impact of physical distancing. There will be other sanitary crisis or new wars due to the global overcrowding.
- The potential growth dematerialization of products and services: we could witness the booming of 3D printers to produce masks and ventilators locally.
- Agility is when we see Apple changing its operations to design, produce, and ship face shields for medical workers.
||Impact of COVID-19 on SEO(Search Engine Optimization)
People all over the globe have seen an adverse effect on businesses and jobs.
The good news from an SEO perspective is that we can take a deep breath and analyze the data that is coming through and the impact it has had on various industries.
There are massive shortages of essentials like toilet paper, hand sanitizers, and face masks. Ecommerce sites with these essentials are in popular demand.
What can you do in times like these?
- Be positive, analyze the data, and adjust your SEO services or SEM campaigns regularly.
- Cut costs where possible and let’s get to basics by being lean.
- Depending on your industry, you might want to focus on customer service rather than acquisition.
- Be creative where possible and emphasize your deliverability. Help and support your community.
- Last but not least, stay calm and stay safe! Keep your distance.
Check out a detailed post on 10 ways SEO could be helpful during the pandemic COVID-19
To know about the change in paid search traffic, refer to the following image:
New Raw Case Study:
- Yale School of Management MBA students completing the final course in the school’s integrated core curriculum this spring are tackling a brand-new raw case addressing the COVID-19 pandemic. The case, which examines the pandemic’s effect through marketing and microeconomic lenses, was a last-minute addition to The Executive, the capstone course that ties together lessons that students learn as they move through the integrated core curriculum.
(To read the whole case, click on the link below:
BENEFITS OF DIGITAL MARKETING:
The main advantage of digital marketing is that a targeted audience can be reached cost-effectively and measurably. Other digital marketing advantages include increasing brand loyalty and driving online sales.
The benefits of digital marketing include:
- Global reach – a website allows you to find new markets and trade globally for only a small investment.
- Lower cost – a properly planned and well-targeted digital marketing campaign can reach the right customers at a much lower cost than traditional marketing methods.
- Trackable, measurable results – measuring your online marketing with web analytics and other online metric tools makes it easier to establish how effective your campaign has been. You can obtain detailed information about how customers use your website or respond to your advertising.
- Personalization – if your customer database is linked to your website, then whenever someone visits the site, you can greet them with targeted offers. The more they buy from you, the more you can refine your customer profile and market effectively to them.
- Plainness – by getting involved with social media and managing it carefully, you can build customer loyalty and create a reputation for being easy to engage with.
- Social currency – digital marketing lets you create engaging campaigns using content marketing tactics. This content (images, videos, articles) can gain social currency – being passed from user to user and becoming viral.
- Improved conversion rates – if you have a website, then your customers are only ever a few clicks away from making a purchase. Unlike other media which require people to get up and make a phone call, or go to a shop, digital marketing or social media marketing can be seamless and immediate.
Together, all of these aspects of digital marketing have the potential to add up to more sales.
Want to read more, GREAT!
Refer to the following links:
- Impact of COVID-19 on the global economy: https://indianexpress.com/article/explained/explained-how-has-covid-19-affected-the-global-economy-6410494/
- How COVID-19 will impact tourism sector: http://www.businessworld.in/article/Impact-Of-COVID-19-On-Tourism-In-India/16-06-2020-286114/
Impact of COVID-19 on the Indian Industry:
The actual mode of marketing has completely changed. It is building more new innovative ideologies on the digital market, which will very soon make its way to excellence.
It would look like –
• Webinars: from presentations to programs
Just think about late-night talk shows, coffee breaks, and chats, the traditional ‘present a concept and show my application’ webinar is over now. The next generation of webinar series are programs design to engage and encourage interaction, and people will want to subscribe or opt-in to receiving them regularly.
• Events: from physical to digital
There’s a lot of room and capabilities available to improve digital events as digital events have been kind of boring – and many still are. As brands are forced to cancel their physical events or their presence at physical events, there is an opportunity to create a digital version that is equally engaging and interactive.
• Personalized experiences
If you finding a way to replace nurture emails that don’t seem to work, creating personalized landing pages might help. These aren’t your typical landing page with a single asset. Instead, personalized landing pages contain lots of curated, relevant content, and focus on a particular industry, use case, or account. Every interaction is trackable, and allow the visitor to select where they want to go next.
Lastly, I just need to say, stop the spread of the COVID 19 virus across the globe, the best solutions are practicing social distance and working remotely from home. With the sudden drop in the number of customers, businesses relying on in-person contacts are experiencing the worst hit and suffering huge losses. To mitigate the damage, the government must devise digital marketing strategies and continue to survive even during these tough times.
By:- Sneha Routh