It’s been just over three weeks of lockdown now and it doesn’t look like the coronavirus situation is getting any better. It’s affecting everyone in the world in crazy ways, but how has the coronavirus affected the marketing world? No one knows for sure how things will turn out in the coming months, but let’s take a look at how the marketing world has been affected so far and our predictions for the future.
Traditional marketing has declined
Traditional marketing has already been hit over the last few years due to digital marketing being so readily available to people at a fraction of the cost. But traditional marketing such as billboards, TV and radio ads and print publications have still been a popular choice amongst the bigger brands. These forms of marketing can reach a huge audience with a really big impact, but you often need bigger budgets to be able to afford these.
TV ads have been a controversial subject with many companies cutting ad spend to save on costs. With all the major sporting events cancelled for 2020, that’s millions of pounds in sponsorship deals lost for TV channels such as ITV and Channel 4.
However, with more people now staying indoors, more TV is being watched and TV ads could prove effective again. But the types of companies investing in this field will be different, as there’s no signs that bricks and mortar stores will be open any time soon.
Organic traffic has dropped
Of course, it depends on what industry you’re in, but on the whole, organic traffic has dropped. Industries like travel and events have seen a huge decline in traffic, as have lots of e-commerce websites. However, many other e-commerce websites have thrived – it all depends on what they’re selling. Luxury good will not do as well during this time as people are worried about their financial situation. However, companies selling essentials will see their sales skyrocket while people cannot go out to stores to buy their usual products.
This will also see an increase in ad spend as brands are now more focused on a particular demographic. However, it appears that the cost-per-click for many industries has now dramatically reduced, by even 47%! So, you can actually acquire more customers at a fraction of the normal cost.
News sites, however, have seen a huge increase in organic traffic with many people who rarely frequented news sites now browsing them on a daily basis!
The consumer has changed
With more people staying indoors and browsing the internet at home, the typical consumer has changed. Many fashion brands have now developed a “work from home” range, companies are promoting products that help you set up a “home office” and brands who mainly operated in-person are now developing digital solutions.
Now that people are not commuting to work on a daily basis, you would think that there’s a lot less time spent on mobile phones, as people are now sitting at computers during the day. We’ve had lots of brands ask us to improve their desktop site as they will be receiving a lot more traffic there compared to the mobile site. However, we predict that the use of mobile will not decline as much as they think. In fact, in some demographics, the mobile usage will increase a lot.
Whilst at work, a lot of managers will ban the use of mobile phones and so employees will be used to browsing from a desktop. Now that they’re working from home, there will be a lot more time spent on social media and mobile browsing.
Social media ad spend will increase
Due to the amount of time people will spend on social media now, we predict that the social ad spend will drastically increase compared to that of Google Ads. People naturally browse through their phone when they’re bored and with a lot more time on people’s hands, they will be browsing through social media more frequently.
The drum predicts that social media ad spend will rise by 22.2% because of the coronavirus.
However, the trend of Google Ads could easily shift towards more people using the Google Display Network and placing display ads on news sites since they are now receiving a lot more traffic.
Influencer marketing has shifted industries
There’s a mixed review from the influencer industry as many influencers complain they are not able to find work and campaigns have been cancelled. However, these are largely influencers from the travel and events industries. These brands have simply hit pause on all influencer marketing activity for obvious reasons, leaving content creators confused as to what to do.
However, the more savvy influencers have now shifted to other booming industries such as coaching or consulting. Influencers in the fitness industry have been enjoying a big increase in engagement and sales. With gyms shut for the foreseeable future, many are desperate to find home workout solutions to get them through the lockdown.
Whatever happens with coronavirus, marketing as we know it will change. Brands have already changed to providing digital solutions, people are getting used to shopping online and many companies will continue to work from home for many months. So, the way we work will change.
The key is not to overlook digital opportunities. Many companies are panicking and essentially shutting up shop because they are no longer able to trade like they used to. However, with a little creativity, your business could suddenly offer a whole new digital solution that could really change everything. It may require a new marketing option that you’re not used to, but it’s essentially a new market out there, so it may work wonders.
Give it a go!