What is the role of businesses in an economy facing the impact of a global catastrophe? What are the marketing strategies to be adopted for effective and efficient results? These are the questions arising in the minds of entrepreneurs, marketers around the world during these uncertain times. During any crisis, people seek reassurance and guidance from their leaders. In the current scenario, customers have similar expectations from businesses they support. Businesses are reassessing and re-evaluating their strategies to survive, sustain and evolve to meet the expectations of the customers. By building strong connections with its customers and through genuine engagements with them, brands can build customer loyalty. Agility and flexibility are required to face the changing market dynamics.
Apart from conveying empathy and indicating a common goal to the customer, businesses must follow through and act upon their words. Brands that refrain from taking a stance, face severe backlash and lose the trust of its customers. Thus, marketers must evaluate and understand the situation and carefully devise strategies for effective communication.
Raja Rajamannar, Mastercard’s Global CMO has shared the four traps to be avoided while developing marketing strategies.
Lay Offs in the Marketing team
Companies are responsible for the welfare of their employees, especially during times of crisis. Laying Off staff is a temporary solution, which leads to negative impacts in the long run of the business. The cost of hiring and training new people is high and the process is time consuming. Whereas retaining employees is necessary to instill stability, trust and to gain their loyalty.
Repetition of marketing content
Brands tend to blindly follow successful trends and replicate messages conveyed by others in the market. This displays a lack of uniqueness of ideas and disregard towards the customer. Original messages and ideas are appreciated by consumers and lead to improved market share even during a crisis.
Silence is undesirable during a crisis, as it reflects a negative image of the brand. It creates a vacuum of information and turns customers against the brand. Taking a stance is highly necessary and has long term effects.
Placing customers at the end of the priority list
Businesses that focus on safeguarding themselves at the cost of the customers, fail to sustain in the long run. Customers must be given top priority and efforts must be put to build long lasting relationships. Businesses must assess and adopt marketing strategies after careful analysis of the situation.
Most importantly, it must be an ideal leader for its employees and customers, by building relationships and communicating empathy and trust to the stakeholders.