Content marketing has become an increasingly important part of any marketing strategy. It gives businesses the opportunity to connect and engage with their audience on a regular basis, in a non-transactional way. It also helps build brand awareness and supports in nurturing client relationships so at the point of readiness to purchase, your business is top of mind.
As a result of COVID-19, many businesses have been forced to connect with their audience in new ways. This crisis has not only impacted hundreds of thousands of businesses across the world but it has also led to a shift in consumer needs - forcing businesses to adapt in order to stay viable during this time.
So, if you HAVEN’T looked at altering your business’ content marketing strategy yet, here are some things you need to consider:
What is your content marketing goal right now?
Whether you're selling a product or a service, before you start planning, you need to decide what your content marketing goal is going to be during these challenging times.
This will depend on the industry you’re in - has it been hard hit or just slightly impacted? For example, if you work in travel your approach would be quite different to an industry such as tech. Ask yourself, do you want to:
- Nurture and maintain client relationships
- Provide extra support to new and existing business, or
- Explore new opportunities with existing clients to add value to their experience with your business?
What do you need to do to ensure your strategy fits with the shift in consumer needs?
Consumer’s spending habits have changed due to job losses and lockdown laws - creating a retail landscape like nothing we’ve seen before. With new trends emerging as a result of COVID-19 it’s inevitable that your marketing strategy will have to change in response.
If you’re unsure how to follow the shift in consumer needs, analyse surrounding trends and look to competitors to see how they are engaging with their audience. Ultimately, you want to leverage content that reflects this shift in your consumers' needs so they feel inclined to stay connected with your business during this crisis.
What does this mean for the types of content you’ll produce?
If pre-COVID your primary content marketing objective was to educate consumers on your product or service, ask yourself, is this still the right approach? Or, is there a different approach that may resonate with them more right now?
If you are adjusting your marketing strategy then chances are your approach to content will also need to change. During this time it’s crucial for you to focus on creating evergreen and time-sensitive content. Creating only content that will become outdated quickly is not the goal here - doing this is an ineffective use of resources. Of course you want to address COVID and the situation we are all in, but address it in a way where the content is still relevant to the world outside of this crisis. If you are producing content around business feasibility during this time, ensure the points you are creating will remain relevant post COVID-19. Our experience with time-sensitive content is, it’s been really great at driving volume of traffic - as long as the topic is relevant to the audience and your business.
During this crisis, we have put focus on ensuring we deliver both types of content. For an example of how we have delivered evergreen content during COVID, check out this blog. For an example of how we have created time-sensitive content, watch this one.
Here are some other ideas and examples to help you get started:
- Educational content
Provide knowledge that will help your consumers overcome this time. Produce content that provides strategies on how to improve processes, efficiencies, cost savings etc. This can be via blogs, videos or downloadable resources such as eBooks or case studies. Some examples that we have created for our audience are:
- Live videos or webinars
You can also provide educational content through pre-recorded or live webinars or Q&As. This will give a nice personal touch on the content you produce and will really help your audience connect with your business. Another idea is to reach out to your industry partners with expertise in certain areas to add extra value for your consumers. See below for an example of how we have stayed connected with our audience during this time:
- Free tools or resources
Creating free valuable content, such as checklists, that your consumers can use in their day-to-day operations is also a really good tactic that will keep you connected. For example:
- Checklist: Returning to the office post COVID-19
It’s absolutely crucial for your content strategy to remain agile, especially during these uncertain times. Doing so will allow your business to adapt quickly when consumer demands change.