By now, you must have heard about COVID-19.
COVID-19, or else known as Coronavirus, has been wreaking havoc across the world, with many practicing “social distancing” and staying home. The sad reality is it is spreading at an alarming rate and will continue to spread for some time.
Nobody knows how many more will get infected, but it has caused havoc to businesses and stock markets, which means as a marketer or a business, you will also be affected.
COVID-19 has forced many across the globe to rethink our regular lives from school to work to entertainment.
In response to the ban on travel, school closures, and suggestions to not gather in large groups and keep a distance from fellow human beings to combat the spread of the virus, many people turned to digital mode to maintain normalcy. It’s been imperative to transform our workplaces and education centers into digitally so that it operates effectively.
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Studies show that those companies who are now able to use technology well to continue their business and rethink their business model for the coming future by fast-tracking digital transformation will be the ones who will be ahead of their competition.
Capability to Work from Home
Even organizations that were resistant to the idea of a distributed workforce have been compelled to allow working from home, so work can still be continued while taking severe precautions to combat the spread of this deadly virus. According to a survey, nearly one-third of people in the United States worked from home before the pandemic. Over recent weeks, many Indian companies have mandated their workforce to work from home to socially distance people and control the spread of Coronavirus. Twitter and other MNC’s encouraged their workers to work from home, and other companies like Google and JP Morgan were developing remote working policies in the event, they required to shift work to homes.
While the capability to work from home is a benefit many people value, many organizations lack the technology infrastructure to provide that potential without making any sacrifice to “business as usual.” However, one unexpected outcome of COVID-19 is that companies realize the advantages of fast-tracking digital transformation.
When many Chinese cities went under complete lockdown as COVID-19 started spreading, the government and many organizations encouraged people to stay at home, which gave them the chance to experience the joys as well as the chaos of working from home. However, Chinese companies had the right technology to permit working from home, but many company cultures were not.
While some organizations will ultimately go back to the rigid work-in-office policies, it is expected that some will realize the advantages to employees and that, it can be done efficiently. If nothing else, they will have useful experience with what is required and how to accommodate work-from-home requirements in the future when it is needed again because of another outbreak or any other reason.
Before the outbreak of COVID-19, there was an improvement made in the telemedicine field; however, public health representatives are healthcare systems to grow their telemedicine through various online tools and smartphones.
Technology can help in treating patients and in diagnosing those who do not have any illness but are worried they might suffer because of seeking treatment at crowded hospitals by communicating with them through telehealth technology. And, utilizing telemedicine restrictions human-to-human contact, critically significant to slow the process of transmission. There are many benefits to telehealth but there are challenges also that need to overcome. Healthcare systems are being forced to address these challenges sooner than later with COVID-19.
As COVID-19 spreads throughout countries, universities, teaching institutions and colleges started virtual learning options. Many institutions decided to complete the rest of their semester’s work through online learning to fight the virus. While many big and popular universities had experience with virtual learning like Harvard Business School Online and were better equipped for the shift, many companies do not have that set up for online classes.
There are some popular institutions that are going virtual (Digital Marketing courses in Bangalore), leaving administrators and teachers to make sure that all children have access to all the necessary tools and technology that they require to learn from home. The shift to digital education is disruptive as it was not planned before the coronavirus was detected, but the educational institutions and educators will be prepared for the future in a much better way. In China, where first the Coronavirus was detected got digital platforms running under a tight schedule so that education continues as it is.
Events becoming Virtual
Along with several in-person conferences being canceled across the world in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, some of them are opting for virtual events. The first conference to cancel because of the safety concerns was “Mobile World Congress”. It is the annual gathering of electronic manufacturers. Collison, another fastest-growing tech conference in North America, was another conference that turned to be virtual as Collison from Home-in-person event got rescheduled to June 2021.
Conferences are a trillion-dollar industry and have been a significant medium to exchange different ideas and build professional relationships. There are some companies that are trying to bridge the gap between in-person events and virtual ones with platforms that bring together networking, video, and more. The outbreak of Coronavirus has pushed conference organizers and marketers to think something unique to offer compelling alternative choices regarding public safety. This push could also result in improvements for the future with how individuals meet and interact in a better way virtually.
Change in Social Media Usage
Social distancing is nowadays the number 1 need. So, naturally, the only method to follow this is to socialize through online networking. With so many people working from and taking frequent breaks, social media usage is skyrocketing.
There have been about a 29% increase in Social Media Marketing activity in March 2020 as many countries recommended self-quarantine measures. Why? As almost all social media sites like Facebook, Reddit, and Twitter have reported an increase in their traffic, duration of each session, and new signups. As all the countries put their cities in lockdown, dependence on social media will keep on rising.
The difference in Online Shopping
E-commerce giants like Amazon and Flipkart have shifted their focus on delivering essential goods first. This does not mean that the online delivery of non-essential items has dropped. Impeded awareness regarding the plight of the services industry may have been helpful as customers are avoiding ordering items that they don’t require currently. Sanitary essentials, pet food, and toilet rolls have taken priority over clothes, toys, and furniture. However, this trend will soon become normal like earlier regardless of the COVID-19 outbreak.
How you can optimize your Digital Marketing Method
As more people work from home and commuting is no longer a necessity, they have plenty of time to devise online marketing strategies. Whether it is an opportunistic content or SEO marketing plan for a sanitizer company or a worldwide media house struggling to advertise an infographic on way to wash hands for 21 seconds, strategies can be well fine-tuned.
So, while we use this “free” time to our benefits, let us look at a few things that we can do at this time & let’s start with Digital marketing Learning.
Review your accounts every day. Check for the fall in impressions and traffic on your analytics tool and find out what you can remove from them. The balance between offline and online channels must be revisited. Offline placements may have worked before but now, keeping this situation in mind the time has come to focus more on online channels Facebook Live and YouTube display ads.
Hopefully, the Covid-19 gets under control. For the time being, don’t socialize, follow cleanliness, and avoid crowded places. And as far as marketing is concerned, this is the time for you to put your extra efforts. It’s time to follow what Warren Buffet once said, “Be Fearful when others are greedy and greedy when others are fearful.”