Where should Marketers spend their time?

By Sarah Evans, Senior Digital Strategist at Bottle.

As lockdown continues, brands need to make sure they’re in the best possible position when we emerge from all this *gestures broadly*.

There are two key approaches: being responsive and reactive in the here and now, and optimising and planning for the coming months. With a blend of both, brands can use this time effectively to stay present and prepared.

Read the Room and Create Accordingly

Initially brands were approaching their communications strategy with extreme caution. Rightly so; people have been quick to criticise when brands have misjudged the tone of their communications: see ‘First Lines of Emails I’ve Received While Quarantining’.

As lockdown has progressed, we’re not just see-sawing between hard news and light entertainment, but our mindset has shifted to productivity. Searches for online learning and ‘how to… [+ new skill]’ have sky rocketed – which is where useful and practical content has come into its own. Brands should keep monitoring these trends using social listening and search behaviour analysis, and act on your insights quickly.

Be Reactive and Agile

People are spending 40% more time on social during lockdown. It’s a great platform to be flexible and really listen to your audience (and competitors). I’ve seen a big increase in social media engagement across our clients where we’ve pivoted our content strategy to be relevant and helpful, share positive stories and build community spirit.

Maintaining meaningful engagement with your audience via digital channels is one of the most important things for brands currently, keeping their stories alive and their presence (positively) felt.

Bank Content Beyond Lockdown

Get ahead of your content schedule. Plan and create up the next six months’ worth of content now: not only great to build momentum back up from an SEO perspective, but also free up time in the future to be reactive and strategic when we’re back up and running. This will also keep your stories flowing in other marketing channels like email and social media later in the year.

Answer the Public, Google Trends and SEO tools like ahrefs and SEMrush are great onsite content planning tools, which you can optimise for SEO.

Refresh Your Audience Personas

Get to know your audience again – have they changed, grown or evolved since the last time they were created? This is a key opportunity to listen: social media, comments sections, forums, search behaviour – even your own customer service teams. How have they been behaving during the crisis for example, are they craving information or entertainment?

If you don’t already have personas, find out how to go about building them here.

Google Analytics Review

Take time to review and optimise your GA set up and site performance.

Check things like your utm tracking; are your naming conventions consistent and effective? Are your goals all still valid and tracking correctly? Is your Search Console connected and pulling data through? This is especially important if data gets pulled through to a dashboard like Data Studio where it’s all automated.

Making sure you have the best data available enables you to understand performance better, which will be critical if and when you have to make some tough decisions about where best to spend your budget.

It’s still a challenging time for businesses and individuals alike. Your brand must think long term to survive and weather the storm, and we hope these tips go some way to helping you do just that.

Photo by Agê Barros on Unsplash

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