There is no doubt that the COVID 19 pandemic is a crisis. It has stricken the economic world deeply and adversely impacting the financial markets and changing the way customers shop, work and play due to the impending economic recession. Should the world of marketing take an active role in addressing the pandemic or simply be reactionary to trending topics? Marketing in a pandemic is a different world, but the rules of the game remain much the same.
What are the best ways to determine the opportunities hidden in a crisis? Marketing is all about needs and fulfilling those needs. During a time of crisis, address how the audience will be impacted and how the products and services being marketed offer a solution. Then it will become possible to deliver the resolution that they require, and perhaps increase sales even during the current global pandemic and “imminent” economic recession.
Digital Marketing During The Coronavirus Global Pandemic
Much of the battle against the COVID-19 global pandemic is taking place behind closed doors. A translation agency somewhere has certified medical translators and others, working from home and translating documents, to ensure that scientists, academics, and medical professionals around the world have the latest data immediately after publication.
While a translation company working in a traditional office may be failing, language service providers offering services online have record levels of work due to the COVID-19 pandemic. These remote translation agencies online are seeing a major increase in business because they do not have to limit their operations at the risk of exposure, despite the ongoing global pandemic.
As more and more of the world continues to move online, the detrimental impact is felt even during a global pandemic such as the current COVID-19 crisis. Digital marketing during a pandemic is an excellent opportunity to push sales online, ultimately creating a new business-consumer paradigm and offering new, exciting and potentially profitable opportunities for enterprises.
Digital Marketing and Localization Services in the age of the Coronavirus
Marketing is in a large sense about focusing on the needs of people, and addressing them by offering meaningful solutions. In times of global crisis such as with the global pandemic, people are going to be focused on the crisis at hand.
Marketing during a global crisis should focus on getting meaningful information out to the people, which requires providing meaningful solutions to the audience. What is a language service provider if not a translation agency that can provide affordable language services including resonant localization strategies to stimulate a more meaningful reaction from the audience? The cost of translation from an agency that also provides localization services is small in regards to the potential return from a larger global audience.
It’s worth taking a moment to examine localization in more detail here. What is the concept of localization? It is shaping and moulding a translation, a website, a product or anything else that needs to be altered to fit with the cultural expectations of a new audience.
In the case of marketing translation, localization means taking account of the expectations, emotive responses, values, traditions and beliefs of the local audience to whom you are reaching out. Doing so can involve a range of tasks, including:
- Localizing your brand name, strapline, logo, and colours to better suit the target market.
- Adapting your social media strategy to reach customers at a personal level in new, more culturally appropriate ways.
- Updating your SEO to better fit local consumer search habits.
- Redesigning your website and other marketing materials to fit longer texts, new imagery and/or a different writing direction.
There comes a point when localization involves changing so much that it tips over into transcreation. This is an almost complete overhaul of marketing materials and strategy, but with the same intended outcomes as the original plan.
Successful digital marketing strategies can be boosted through the use of a translation agency that specializes in localization strategies. Successful long-term digital marketing strategies must explain the correlation between the crisis and the audience, and how the product or service being marketed will directly address or resolve the global crisis for the larger audience. The inclusion of language and localization services will ensure that the message remains empathetic and effective towards the target audience.
Digital Marketing in Response to the Pandemic
Conducting a successful digital marketing campaign during a time of crisis makes it very easy to get caught up in the hyperbole and begin focusing on the crisis itself, the global pandemic in this case. The anxiety levels of the audience will already be high during a global crisis. A digital marketing campaign filled with simple stats and statistics may get a higher click-through rate or more attention, but it is not going to generate any long-term marketing success stories.
Digital marketing during the COVID-19 pandemic, during a global recession or any other global crisis, should explain to the audience how the crisis relates to them, and provide a sufficient level of information to allow the audience to infer that a solution is at hand.
Why such a subtle marketing approach?
First; if all the answers are provided in the marketing, what is left to generate the desired response? Second; the members of the audience that are looking for that particular solution will be more inclined to look, and ultimately, more likely to provide the desired response, whether it be clicking the “buy now” button or merely generating leads. Subtle digital marketing strategies, especially when marketing during times of crisis will tend to be more effective.
Successful digital marketing strategies using localization services means that the marketing will more directly target the audience, in the local vernacular, to ensure the audience that the marketer is empathetic and understanding from a local perspective. A language services provider implementing localization strategies can make that happen.
Split Testing and Digital Marketing Strategies During a Global Pandemic
Split testing or A/B testing is virtually always a good idea with very rare exceptions. However, it is especially important for marketing campaigns during times of crisis. During these times, the audience is going to be much more attuned to whatever the crisis may be. As a rule, however, the audience will want to know more than “just the facts” at any given point in time.
The audience must be informed of how the crisis will impact them, the problems that will arise, and the provision of a resolution by engaging in the desired response. However, a global pandemic or an economic downturn may change at a rapid rate. As the trends change, the marketing strategies will also evolve. This continues until the time the marketer is in a position to establish trends instead of just reacting.
Not only should split testing be a part of any marketing campaign during a time of crisis, but consideration should be given to the extent of the crisis. What happens if the economic downturn improves? Or if the COVID-19 global pandemic worsens? Are marketing plans in place and ready to be implemented or is a last-minute rush going to be needed to change strategies every time the crisis moves?