How To Market In The Covid Era

Disclosure : I am the founder of Everything detailed here happens, exactly as described. The only edits are to names or places, protecting the privacy of those involved.

Marketing and Covid-19. Two things that would never be confused, let alone even be in the same conversation. The world was, and still is focused on Covid-19 and rightfully so. It’s a once in a century event, and has caused much pain and depression.

As a company, how do you even try to get anyone to notice you, and the even bigger question is, should you even try to be noticed during a pandemic?

We went through this scenario in our heads over and over, From a business perspective, you need to market and grow revenue. Without that, you lay off really solid people. However, from a human perspective, how do you market to those who’ve lost loved ones, gotten sick themselves, been laid off from their jobs, and more.

We decided to take a big step back on all paid advertising. It was the right thing to do, both from a human perspective, and from a business risk-reduction goal.

What did we do?

We actually did not stop marketing. What we did was human outreach. We went (and still continue now) and reached out to those who had complaints on other providers. Who had problems with their service, regardless of who or what was the cause. We decided to help out people with their web technology problems, regardless if they would become customers or not.

It was the easiest thing in the world to do. Simply be there, help. Don’t look for a sale, just help. If it led to a sale, fantastic, but that should not be the reason for reaching out to someone who is having problems with their service, website or anything else at that time.

The goal was to have human marketing. It’s very easy to forget when you’re spending a ton of money on programmatic ads. You never speak to the person signing up and becoming your customer. They come in from an ad, and that’s the end of it.

What this initiative showed us, is that no matter who’s out there, they are a human being. And the result from this new type of marketing has been stunning. From a purely numbers point of view, 16 out of every 100 outreaches did become customers. Not right away, not immediately, but our tracking shows a 16% conversion rate from this kind of outreach.

We’ve now added outreach to our marketing initiatives. It’s slower, and does not scale as well, however its conversion rate, and most importantly, impact on each person and potentially future customer, is such a happy outcome, that we’ve decided to continue reaching out to people, both as a marketing program, and to just simply make people happy.

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