Almost a year after much of the world went into lockdown, brands are coming to deal with a hard reality: the ‘new normal state’ is, perhaps ironically, going to be a prolonged period of uncertainty that tremendously affects the way we do marketing. The new strain of COVID-19 is now roaming in England and threatens to spread worldwide. A return to lockdown seems imminent, and businesses are gearing up for a long and difficult recession when the COVID-19 vaccine is ineffective to this new breed.
Despite the upheaval defining this most difficult year, companies are continuing to transform in real-time and lay the foundations for future marketing trends. In this article today, we will discuss some key global marketing strategies in the new normal state.
Build Trust With Every Interaction
In this unprecedented time, consumers tend to trust organizations that put an emphasis on the people, not the money. The way brands respond to the pandemic could also become a key component when shoppers choose where to buy goods. According to the Edelman survey, seventy-one percent of respondents indicate that they will lose trust in a brand if it has any sign of prioritizing profit over people throughout the time they experience the company’s service.
Under normal circumstances, buyers are already very picky but they are even more sensitive in this confusing situation. They want to see companies protect their customers, employees, and work to reduce uncertainty. Brands that are open, honest, and consistent will continue to win the consumer’s trust.
Offer Assurance To Customers
Consumers are demonstrating an increased level of demand for trust and assurance during the new normal state. Even in relatively low-consideration product categories where price used to be the key differentiator, consumers now are making greater efforts in learning how these products fulfill their needs. Shocking sales or promotions can no longer lure consumers to buy things they don’t need.
They are turning to social proof to be convinced why Brand X is better than Brand Y, determine their specific needs, and become more interested in the provenance and the credentials of products they are buying.
Therefore, brands need to be sincere in their marketing campaigns in the new normal state. The selling message should be simple and honest. Don’t include any untrue shocking promotions or discounts. The product price in the advertisement should be equal to or slightly different than the real price. Brands must not give out a low price and add it up with extra fees when the customers make payment.
Shoppers will feel they are being tricked and annoyed when these things happen, especially during the pandemic when everyone is tightening their budget. In the new normal state, these classic marketing tricks could destroy the assurance brands want to offer to their customers.
Even before COVID-19, the marketing teams have been looking to tailor their execution to local cultures, events, and ways of life. The pandemic has accelerated the localization trend, to keep people closer to home for their own safety and limit the spread of COVID-19.
Given that countries, regions, and cities are moving and reacting inconsistently to the crisis, marketers are combining global marketing with hyper-local marketing to adapt to the new normal state. This means what the customer is looking for, how they want to interact with the company (online and in-person) differ from place to place. Accordingly, the value a company can create, and the marketing message, will differ locally as well.
Localization demands geographically-tailored marketing strategies. In the past, companies didn’t have locations in mind – they can post an ad, and run it on TV or online. The smallest scale of ads used to be city-based but we now need smaller modules than that. Brands should look carefully into the buying habits, social status, or culture of each area within a big city.
We can expect that the unique circumstances introduced by the COVID-19 will encourage other businesses to move in this direction.
Utilize Data Analysis
Data analysis is an all-time important tool in marketing. Real-time data will enable companies to offer, sell, and deliver more relevant products, services, and experience on a more granular level as well as offer more personalized and unique marketing execution.
Since the crisis, the definition of historical data has changed. Initial analysis was done over 3-4 months but now we are working on very short-term data due to the unpredictable nature of COVID-19. Many companies are now refreshing analysis daily or even more frequently in order to come up with good marketing strategies in the new normal state.
Through this article, we hope to help retailers know what should be included in their marketing strategies in the new normal state. Please feel free to contact us if you have any further questions!