Digital Fuel Podcast - Marketing Through COVID-19

Digital Fuel Podcast - Marketing Through COVID-19

Listen to the Podcast Now

 

New: The Beginner's Guide to Generating Inbound Leads

Podcast Transcript

Kevin:
Hey, everybody. It's Kevin D'Arcy from ThinkFuel Marketing and Matt Geraghty from Matty G digital, and welcome to another edition of the Digital Fuel Podcast. Matt, how you doing today?
Matt:
I'm good. I wish people could see your face when you introed me, because you nearly forgot my company name and the podcast name.
Kevin:
I'm surprised I remembered your last name, to be honest. So, hey, it's all good. We got it all out, and if not we could have fixed that in editing, but that's fine. Like we do editing. Anyhow, I guess both of us we're coming at you right now from our houses, because we're under quarantine, well isolation.
Matt:
We literally do every podcast from our respective homes. So, nothing has changed, but continue.
Kevin:
It sounded interesting though, and it sounded relevant to today's work atmosphere that everyone is going through. So, I thought I would throw that in there. Anyhow, we thought what would be an interesting topic for today's show is marketing during this whole COVID-19, coronavirus, everyone stays at home pandemic that we're going through right now. And how should your marketing change? Should it change? And what you can do to continue to persevere, and potentially even grow during this time period. So, I know Matt, this is a topic that's kind of near and dear to your heart, specifically with the types of companies that you work with. Why don't you start off by telling us a little bit about the types of companies you work with and how you've seen them affected by this.
Matt:
You just want me to go first because you prepared nothing.
Kevin: I never prepare.
Matt:
For this podcast or just life in general?
Kevin: Both.
Matt:
Yeah. It's been a tough couple of weeks in general business wise, but it is what it is. And we're all in this together. I do work with a lot of business to consumer businesses, a lot of retail businesses. And they've all been shut down and effectively stopped all their marketing. Understandable in a lot of cases because so many of them have zero cash flow. People that aren't able to sell anything online specifically are in real big trouble.
Matt:
Anyways, I've been thinking a lot about this lately, because I think a lot of business owners are going to have a lot of free time on their hands, "free time", but just trying to think what are some things people should be doing from a marketing perspective. I've heard a lot of different theories, a lot of different strategies about continuing on exactly as is with this. I don't know if that's as appropriate.
Matt:
I would definitely not be very active right now, but I would still be doing something to remain top of mind. My biggest concern as a marketer even is, I don't want to present our best ideas right now, or best promotions right now. But I still want to make sure we're top of mind when the time comes. Like we've talked about on this podcast before, people aren't always ready to purchase right away. So, it needs to be something that we are keeping our businesses and marketing top of mind, et cetera. So, I would kind of lay off everyday posting on social media, any immediate returns on spends, all that kind of stuff.
Kevin:
No, it makes a lot of sense. It's difficult. Like, if you're not able to bring that audience into your store right now, if that's what you have, if you rely on a storefront location, putting materials out there to draw people in like you would typically do is not going to make a lot of sense.
Kevin:
What I'm running into a lot with more of the B2B, business to business side of things is, people who are worried about cashflow, like everyone is and thinking about pulling back a little bit or all together in the marketing. And, to Matt's point, it's not businesses as usual. It's not marketing as usual. But things like, if you're involved in content marketing, if you're blogging on a regular basis to improve your SEO rankings, one thing to consider is that yeah, we're all in quarantine and a lot of businesses are closed, but Google search algorithms are still running. Right? So, if you want to continue to maintain and grow those positions, I'm encouraging people to at least keep up with the content side of it.
Matt:
SEO is the worst thing you could stop right now from a marketing perspective. Because we've talked about this before on this podcast, of course, but SEO is a slow burn and you're building momentum with it. And, if you take your foot off the gas, you're going to be in trouble, if not now, in the future. Like you don't need to keep your foot on the floor of the gas, to keep this terrible analogy going, but you still need to keep something going like whether it's link-building, or this is a wicked time for people to be writing their own content. That's the thing that I run up against a lot is people are always like, oh yeah, I can write, but they never have time for it.
Kevin:
Mm-hmm (affirmative).
Matt:
The best I've ever seen was working with someone where for about a month she was sending me a blog every week, but that slipped when she got busy. And that's normal. That's what I've experienced with everyone I've literally ever worked with. You don't have time to write these things. So, this is the time when you have, again like that quote unquote free time is to write that content, write those service pages, location pages. Blogs would be great right now. Put them on your website now and get market ranking in what, two, three, six months or whatever.
Matt:
Go take pictures too. This is a good time to do like not head shots but just like stuff for your business that you normally don't have. I guess maybe it's like taking an inventory on like what is it that you're doing well and what are you not doing well right now. And take what you're not doing well and kick that up. So, go take pictures for your website and social. Go do videos. Go learn how to be a video marketer or video in your business. I'm terrible on video and that's something I would love to get in my repertoire, but I just can't do it.
Kevin:
Well, some plastic surgery wouldn't hurt.
Matt:
Well, yeah. That's the thing. Like most of this stuff is filtered out and there's CGI and everything for that now, so.
Kevin:
You need some James Cameron work there to make that look good, but-
Matt:
What a dated reference. Why would you not use like Scorsese from this year or even like an Avengers kind of thing?
Kevin:
Because he's not big on the CGI.
Matt:
Yeah, you could use... have you not watched the Irishman?
Kevin: No.
Matt:
What? Well, anyways, we'll edit this out.
Kevin: Probably won't.
Matt:
This is a great time to repurpose existing content too. So like grab those blogs, turn them into infographics, write new blogs from them, more videos, all that kind of stuff.
Kevin:
Absolutely. And, I mean, I guess that's one of the challenges though too, is that, if you're going to go out there and you're going to write these blogs and prepare all these social posts and things like that, one thing to remember is, don't just throw them all up there at once. Right? You've got some downtime. If you have the ability to sit down and write 12 blogs, but you don't think that, once this starts up again, you're going to have the time to continue to write blogs, space them out. Do one a month, right? Do one every other week. Do something like that. You don't want to just put it all out there in one week and then not do anything else for the rest of the year because you get busy again.
Matt:
Yeah, for sure. And that's what I've been recommending to people with social media stuff as well. Again, be active but not very active. And again, don't present your best ideas right now. Don't put your best work out there right now because people aren't looking as actively.
Matt:
However, now is a great time to put together your own like monthly calendars for social. So, you don't have to plan, okay, May 1st we're all at a hibernation. We can start posting stuff again. But you can do general generic type of social media calendars that are focusing on general posts about services, testimonials, things about your business that might not be timely. So, don't be wishing people certain holidays, happy holidays. And like certain things are going on-
Kevin:
Happy coronavirus day.
Matt:
Exactly. Like Easter is toast. Don't worry about Easter. Like who knows if we're going to be out there for May two for Victoria Day weekend. Like don't be putting posts around that at this point, but just general type of posts at this point getting them ready.
Kevin:
Yeah. And one thing I'm going to add in to shift gears a little bit here, unless you have someone else to add around content and social media, Matt, is, if your business is something that it's carrying through this whole pandemic that's happening right now. So, let's say you have a food delivery service, right? Let's say you sell personal protective equipment for healthcare, things that people are still going to be looking for and still needing, despite what's going on out there. At this point, you're going to really want to consider using some Google Search Apps right now.
Kevin:
We've got one customer where they're in that boat. They have a service that is directly beneficial to companies that have basically closed their doors and have all their employees working remotely right now. It's a tool to push out that physical mail that's still coming into the office out to those remote employees, so deposit their checks for them into the banks or cash keeps flowing through. And we just launched a Google Ads campaign for them. And, for a very minimal investment, they're seeing some very quick leads come through. And this is something that people are looking for right now.
Kevin:
And again, go back to the example of a food delivery service, right? People aren't in love with the idea of going to the grocery store right now, and I can understand why. But-
Matt:
Can you? Can you explain in detail your thoughts on the COVID-19?
Kevin:
I will offline. Don't worry. I'm quite well read on this subject, Matt. But keep in mind that, like I said, if your business is doing something that carries through or transcends this COVID-19 pandemic that's going on, look at using Google Ads to get your name out there. SEO and content marketing is not going to be fast enough to get you up there if you want to really grab some space and some market share.
Kevin:
And, to Matt's point earlier, don't start doing social media ads and things like that either right now. Because, especially if you're in the B2B space, people aren't on LinkedIn right now. Nobody is trolling around going, oh, I wonder what's happening in my LinkedIn feed when the whole world's melting around outside and they're worried if they can keep their business open. Right? So, be where people are looking. Google Ads are a great way to do that and a great way to get up there quickly.
Matt:
Yeah. And like, in general, Google Ads right now, even if you're not someone that could quote unquote benefit from what's going on right now, I wouldn't sleep on search ads completely at this point. Like I've seen it already, the people that are continuing to spend on Google Ads. They're not getting as many like searches, and clicks, and everything in general. So, it might not be the worst thing to get some really affordable maybe in some cases free impressions on some things that people aren't searching for as actively, but they're still looking a little bit. And, again, like they might look now because they've got some downtime, they're doing some searching for stuff in the future, summer, who knows when they'll need it. It might be a good opportunity to kind of slide in there and get some cheap free impressions for a little bit.
Matt:
And then, just in general with like calls to action on anything, so your ads or anything in social media, keep them there. I'd remove anything that's immediate, so like immediate type of calls to action. So, forget the call now, call today, schedule an appointment now type thing. Maybe stick more to like planning, be prepared, contact me, more open ending just general like we know you're not going to make this decision today. But, when the time is right, we'll be here. Plan ahead and give me a call type thing.
Kevin:
Yeah. And you bring up a really good point too that I wanted to highlight. It's that, right now, there are a lot of people out there who are pulling back from their marketing budgets, right? So, if typically you can't afford the top spot in Google Pay Per Click or social ads, some of those other people may have pulled back, maybe have cut their marketing budget. And remember, all these platforms are an auction based system. It's whoever is going to pay the most to get up there. So, something that it might have been 20 dollars a click could be down at around 12 dollars, 13 dollars a click now. And it might be a chance for you to get some affordable leads that way as well.
Matt:
Yeah. And eventually, like again, everyone is going to come out of hibernation and everyone is going to be ramping this stuff up and probably really quickly. Because everyone is going to be really desperate. It's going to be bad things coming for a lot of people, like a large financial crisis. So, people are going to want to get their marketing stuff up and running again. And you don't want to be behind your competitor at that point, even more so than you maybe were over these couple months. It's good to keep something online to keep you somewhere in people's minds, so.
Kevin:
No. That's a good point. And so, I think really what we wanted to do today was share some ideas on ways that you could continue to market through this event, some different ways that you could kind of change gears or switch directions in your marketing, but continue to gain some ground. So, hopefully you've picked up some tips and some ideas and realized that you're not alone out there. And so, by any means, if you have questions about any of this, if you just want to chat marketing, anything like that, visit me or Matt's website, ThinkFuel.ca or Matty G. Digital.com? CA?
Matt: Com.
Kevin:
I don't know what your website is.
Matt:
MattyGDigital.com.
Kevin: There you go.
Matt:
Matt Geraghty. Come to my website. I'll help you. Quick summary of what we chatted about in case there are people on this planet that are listening. This was actually a super beneficial podcast for maybe the first time in our history.
Kevin:
Well, there was a Diehard one that we released on like Groundhog day, so.
Matt:
We did have a pretty riveting Diehard conversation that was released in March. Thanks, Ronnie. But a quick summary of what we talked about today for people that are looking for some sort of step ahead or trying to stay afloat with their marketing at this time. Get writing content if you can. Keep your SEO link building going. If you're going to do ads, think about some search ads. Don't turn everything off completely because you're not going to be spending a whole lot on them anyways. And then, make sure your calls to action are not as immediate, more focused on planning. And then, last but not least with social media stuff. And just in general like start planning general marketing reactivity for when you get started that's not like timely, just more general type service based things and kind of take it from there.
Kevin:
Perfect. Well, thanks again, Matt, for being part of this today. As always, it's great chatting with you. And I look forward to hearing from everybody listening out there. If you've got ideas, share them with us. Love to hear it. And we'll talk again soon. Thanks, Matt. And I hope you have a great rest of the day.
Matt: Namaste.
About Author
Kevin D'Arcy

As our Chief Marketing Enthusiast, Kevin strives to provide clarity, honesty, and unique insights into every one of our engagements. Kevin helps companies improve their lead generation, enhance customer acquisition, and increase revenue. With over 18 years of inbound and content marketing experience with B2B technology companies, Kevin brings a straightforward approach to marketing with results that can be measured. He also has the most adorable hound dog that frequently comes to work with him.