4 Digital Marketing Lessons the Pandemic Has Taught Us

Expect the unexpected.

A cliché.

You expect the worst, and yet when it arrives, nothing makes it any easier. We all know one unexpected that leaves us valuable lessons to ponder for the rest of our times: the 2020 coronavirus pandemic.

You expect the worst, and yet when it arrives, nothing makes it any easier. We all know one unexpected that leaves us valuable lessons to ponder for the rest of our times: the 2020 coronavirus pandemic.

Operations are challenging, but this doesn’t mean failing to adapt and learn, thrusting their resources into the digital realm. Ever-resilient as we are, here are some of the digital marketing lessons that the pandemic brought.

Lesson #1 – Building a profitable customer base takes time

Businesses that employed advanced thinking when it comes to digital marketing are certainly reaping their investments’ returns. Before their growing customer base became what it is now, it took them years to build such. So even when there’s a pandemic, these businesses still thrive due to the steady revenue stream.

Those that did not prioritize digital marketing before the economic downturn is scrambling. Nowadays, we see brands cramming their way through small campaigns to keep the business afloat. They do this while learning their way through the digital space. In the end, these campaigns do nothing to build and nurture a community around the brand—they don’t breed awareness or loyalty.

Post-pandemic, no brand should take digital marketing for granted more so now that they realized how it is a gradual process. While at it, it helps to cultivate the relationships you’ve built with your existing customers. Acquiring customers during the pandemic is costlier before it happened. So focus the bulk of energy into best serving the current customers.

Lesson #2 – Being on every digital channel is unnecessary

Now more than ever, businesses are after results. It would be difficult to justify a presence on a channel and the investment involved when it does not generate the results that the C-suite expects.

When the pandemic hits, the immediate response of the brands is either pay-per-click advertising or social media marketing. Some brands focus on organic social while others on paid social media. Any other digital marketing strategies and tactics became “soft” marketing when the pandemic came.

What these moments tell us is, first, to focus on the most relevant digital marketing channels to the operation because, second, they will generate the highest possible ROI for the business. The process will definitely benefit the already-tight marketing budget.

Lesson #3 – Realizing that a seamlessly executed digital strategy starts with the website

The website is one of the most critical components of the digital strategy, if not the most important. As an owned asset, you have full control over what you put in there, the content that is which gives the business an opportunity to talk to hundreds to thousands of customers in various parts of the world.

The benefits of having a website are endless—from capturing leads to executing sales. The website is also the key structure supporting other digital marketing strategies such as search engine optimization (SEO), email marketing, social media marketing, automation, analytics, and more.

Too bad if you abandon your website long before the pandemic spreads. You are not even proud of showing it to the people. So what the businesses do is to reduce marketing spending to devote to website redesign.

Lesson #4 – Gaining a renewed appreciation consumer trends

In the event of shelved digital campaigns, brands are left with succumbing to capture and create demand for the consumers to follow. Now, the consumers are taking the lead and so businesses are tapping into real-time consumer intent.

Trends matter pre-pandemic, and so during the health crisis. It is mostly fueled by what the consumers are doing while on lockdown. Baking, planting, and the overall relevant online selling picked up. If this means updating the entire marketing collateral to adopt to the “new normal,” then so be it.

Nonetheless, big data is nothing new. Businesses are already utilizing data and insights to inform their digital marketing campaigns. Only that the pandemic has put into light how valuable it can be; the importance of mining real-time marketing insights cannot be emphasized enough. This will surely strengthen any business and serve their best interest well into the future.

The unexpected is already here. For a business to thrive, it must remain relevant. Such relevance requires alignment of the business process with digital marketing activities that matter like direct response campaigns. These are the strategies that will bring the business a positive ROI, especially that the marketing spend is getting smaller by the day.

Moving forward, brands, businesses, and organizations must embrace digital marketing not just as a way to triumph over the pandemic. Instead, it should be a fundamental part of the overall marketing strategy. During unexpected times like this, it will drive unprecedented business growth.