In a matter of a few months, COVID-19 has drastically changed the way we shop as well as spend online. While these trends were already unfolding before the crisis, the pandemic has simply accelerated them. Since then, more people have been turning to digital avenues for shopping, something that is likely to stick in the post-pandemic scenario.
On the other hand, the outbreak has also left several marketers mapping out ways around how to scale their businesses and retain customers during this uncertain time. In this age of social distancing, with minimum physical contact, it has become evident that digital avenues are no longer a luxury but an absolute necessity. Then, it is only logical to ask yourself ‘Will the pre-pandemic playbooks work for my brand?’ Let’s have a quick look at some of the ways you can do so in the post-pandemic world.
The Need to Embrace Digitization
An IBEF industry estimate suggests that India’s e-commerce market is expected to reach a valuation of $200 billion by the year 2026. This means - for brands - digitization becomes more important than it ever was to not just reach their customers in the emerging post-pandemic world but also to create a long-lasting impact.
The situation has also given your business a chance to re-look at your existing marketing channel mix. You can leverage ‘owned media’ such as website, social media, and free channels like SEO to expand your digital footprint in the current times. Besides this, invest time on the basics – such as optimizing the content on your website, providing information or easy access to relevant materials and products, and using personalized emails and apps to add value to your loyal customers.
It is no secret that with significant changes taking place around them, customer’s behavior eventually shifts. It is precisely what has been happening since the COVID-19 outbreak. Considering the given situation, your customers have evolved and there have been significant behavioral changes such as remote working (or working from home) becoming a viable alternative for many. In addition, connecting virtually, giving importance to health and immunity building, as well as learning and shopping online are noteworthy transformations.
Customers are also continuously evaluating and revaluating their choices across categories and brands. Therefore, if you are able to solve a real consumer issue as a marketer by offering products and services, you are on the ‘preferred choice’ list. This calls for innovation, and brands that can take advantage of this lucrative opportunity will flourish in the post-pandemic market.
Ideally, brand building is initiated to generate awareness and engagement about your business that is crucial for both short-term as well as long-term growth. Therefore, to do so, continuous as well as creative investment to build a strong emotional connection with consumers is imperative for a lasting impact. It includes identifying the target consumer(s), formulating the brand message, developing intriguing content that can convey the brand message. It’s important to not lose sight of this while continuing with the performance-oriented campaigns which are more impactful in the short-term
Sharp Strategic Focus
Before devising innovative strategies and brand building, what is of critical importance is to identify the area where your business or brand needs to play in. The focus is to find out the areas where your business or brand can truly win and play a critical role in delivering a customer promise in a profitable way. Once this is arrived at, businesses need to rationalize their portfolios accordingly and ensure that the whole organization is rallied around the strategy.
So, thriving in the post pandemic world would require following time-tested approaches of strategic focus and brand building, while adapting to the new ways through innovation and digitization.