7 solutions to the 7 challenges of digital marketing during the COVID-19 pandemic
Taking this reality into account, marketing trends will advance as follows:
At this point, it is undeniable since the coronavirus pandemic has permanently affected our behavior. At home, with only the essentials, we are rethinking our priorities and, mainly, distinguishing what is necessary from what is superfluous and we are adapting as much as possible to the virtual environment.
This reflection also brings with it many changes in our consumption habits, which affects the planning and performance of almost all businesses, both online and with physical presence. We know this not only because of what we are observing in the digital market, but mainly because of what our clients tell us and because of the challenges they tell us that they have to face now.
And it was precisely by being close to them, in that daily contact with our clients, that we were able to gather valuable advice for planning strategies to face the various challenges that arise in this context. In this post we will analyze the main 7 challenges and share what companies can do to face them with confidence.
Challenge # 1 – Lower advertising budget
Even after taking various precautions to continue operating and trying to achieve their goals, many companies have cut costs and are trying to make the most of what is out there.
SOLUTION: Focus on Performance Marketing
This tool is perfect to have absolute control over your investment, without losing a penny on displays that do not offer results. Monitoring the results and ROI of each campaign gives the opportunity to focus investment on the best channels, without waste. Associated with an automated bidding system by Artificial Intelligence tools, such as Criteo’s Adaptive Optimizer, your campaigns will be optimized in real time to deliver the expected results based on your set goals – revenue, conversions, traffic. Another suggestion is to adapt your branding to the new context of social isolation that is presented, from including images that reflect the new daily life of your client and facilities that you value in these moments of social distancing.
Challenge No. 2 – Closing of physical stores
Many companies were forced to close by government decision. But even when confinement and isolation measures have been relaxed in some places, people still avoid leaving the house when it is not really necessary. This involved actions to bring physical store sales to the e-commerce environment. If the relationship with consumers who prefer to buy in a physical store was well established, it is possible to attract them, because of their loyalty, so that they experiment and start buying online.
SOLUTION: Integrate the information of the physical store customers in your online strategies
Incorporate the information about your physical store customers in the database that you will use for your online campaigns, Criteo has experts who can help you with this integration, so that you can communicate with them and offer them what they usually see and buy in a physical store. Also, being aware that your loyal physical store customers know where your physical stores are, bet on campaigns segmented by location so that they always remember your brand and visit your store and buy online, while your physical store is closed. In addition, if your physical store can now reopen its doors, you can promote the reopening through this online channel among your regular physical store customers, offering them advantages for their loyalty.
Challenge No. 3 – Retail partners: hit times
If your business depends on a retail partner, you may be experiencing the above challenge, however, with an aggravating factor: you probably do not have the purchase date of the customers who bought your products, since it is information owned by the partner, and you don’t have your own ecommerce.
SOLUTION: Invest in media at retail sites
Advertising on retail sites will give you the opportunity to publish in the e-commerce of your offline retail partners and know where your online customer is browsing, information that you can use for retargeting campaigns. With the increased demand for online shopping, many retail sites have increased their media inventory, which is a great opportunity to keep your advertising active throughout the day. Remember, your physical store consumer continues to experiment with online shopping. The best thing you can do is be there whenever you log in, whatever time you log in.
Challenge nº 4 – Acquisition of new consumers
Migrating customers from a physical store to the online environment or acquiring new customers online is not an easy task. In this context of social isolation, consumer needs change rapidly and many products are booming. However, online shopping of certain categories continues to be experienced.
days and the competition is too high.
SOLUTION: Reach consumers looking for high-demand products
Booming products attract large numbers of interested consumers. Being close to them is essential to get to know them and, for this, you first need to know which are those products and the most popular categories of the Control Panel – Impact of the coronavirus. The next step is to launch a campaign that we at Criteo call «Commerce Audience.» It is based on the purchase intention of a group of consumers due to their interest in brands or products in the same category as yours. And you can make these campaigns even more efficient by associating them with «buyer personas,» a list of characteristics that shape the personality of the consumers you want to reach. This increases the chances that the campaign will find new future customers with a profile – and a purchase intention – very similar to those of your current customers.
Challenge # 5 – In-App Retention
We already know that the routine at home has made people increase the time of use of their mobile devices and, more especially, the apps. 8 out of 10 Americans use at least 1 app once a day, to watch movies, consume news or play games. On the other hand, 1/3 of those users said that they frequently deleted apps from their devices during the isolation period. How to make sure that your app is not deleted?
SOLUTION: Focus on the user experience
Try incorporating high-demand features into your app in other apps, such as entertainment or video calls. If your app offers these services, launch a retargeting campaign to inform people who are looking for them what your app offers. Make the most of the most time users spend on their devices and create a loyalty or referral program. In our app usage survey, we found that 50% of users said they downloaded apps after recommendation from coworkers, friends, and family. And, of course, take the opportunity to encourage people who have already downloaded it but have not used it yet to use your app; connect with them through emails, push notifications with promotions and benefits.
Challenge No. 6 – Creatives and message
We are all aware that the consumer, deprived of leaving home, has started to make their purchases through the Internet and the competition to capture their attention is very high. Many brands are trying to differentiate themselves and associate with the new needs of this consumer with relevant messages.
SOLUTION: Inspire and motivate your clients during this difficult period
A Kantar Marketing survey of more than 35,000 consumers revealed that 77% of them think that brands should «communicate how they can be relevant in the new daily life» and that 70% believe that brands should use an «encouraging tone.» and only 8% think brands should stop advertising during the pandemic. This information tells us that the key is to continue showing products relevant to your consumer’s new lifestyle, always using a positive tone and encouraging messages, preferably with more emotional and less rational approaches.
Challenge No. 7 – Lower demand
Some sectors have suffered drastic losses as a result of the effective suspension of demand for their products and services. This is the case, for example, in the tourism, event planning and automotive sectors. However, this is not even a compelling reason to stop communicating with your consumers and offering your products and services.
SOLUTION: Plant Confidence During Isolation To Cultivate Loyalty In The Future
For companies operating in these segments and others affected in the same way, this is a time to build strong relationships and a brand image through corporate communication. Show your clients what are the values of your company, the corporate initiatives, the flags that it defends. Create alternatives that can be consumed without affecting isolation, such as online music performances. And, above all, do not be aggressive with sales strategies, unless the consumer shows extreme interest, including the suspension of advertising in certain geographical areas that have not been served by problems derived from the pandemic. This is the time to be close, in a transparent way and offer your clients an impeccable experience of using digital platforms.
If your business is experiencing one or more of these challenges, you can count on Criteo to help you meet them. Our experts can show you success stories from other clients or from other segments that help you boost your sales, strengthen your brand and, most importantly, help you plan your future plans, which have been affected by the great
change in consumer behavior due to the coronavirus pandemic. Get in touch with us and tell us what difficulties you are encountering. We will be delighted to help you!