In light of the recent pandemic, businesses are facing a substantial uphill battle against a collapsing economy. Most consumers have turned away from purchasing at brick and mortar establishments in favor of online shopping. At the moment, people are focused on investing their limited funds primarily in essential items related to health, food, basic household products, or entertainment.

 This presents a problem for many businesses. With a finite advertising landscape on social media platforms but an increasing number of businesses that have turned their focus toward online marketing, many businesses are drowning in the face of an oversaturated digital marketplace. Even if your business had a solid digital marketing strategy in place before the COVID-19 crisis hit, you may be needing to amend your strategy to account for the increased competition.

 Keeping these hurdles in mind, how do you stand out from competitors on social media? We recommend these three ways:

 #1: Focus on the Long Game

It’s tempting to pull your financial resources from the marketing efforts that don’t immediately generate revenue, but history shows us that businesses that have refocused spending rather than making cuts in spending during recessions have generally fared better throughout and after financial crises. 

 In general, social media marketing does not yield many immediate revenue results, but this is especially true in a time when people are more cautious about how they invest their money. The solution? Focus on the long game strategy. This is particularly important to keep in mind if you are a non-essential business. People probably will not be buying much right now if they don’t need it, but they’re still spending a lot of time online so it’s important that your business stays on their radar. Make sure that when they have the money to spend again, they will remember your products.

 With that in mind, here are four aspects of the long game strategy that you should be focusing on right now:

  • Brand Image: This is the perfect time to reimagine your brand. Is your image standing out on digital platforms? Is it simple and relatable? Does it make people feel the way you want them to feel? Is it taking into account our current situation? Is it forward-thinking enough to appeal to people in a post-coronavirus world?
  • SEO: Although you may have heard one-off success stories, most of the time SEO success doesn’t come quickly. However, it is so important to make sure you are appearing in Google searches, particularly when there is so much competition. Now is not the time to skimp on SEO.
  • Word of Mouth: Influencers run the game right now. People are constantly on social media and they want to feel connected to a person that they can regularly check in with and feel like they are part of a larger community outside of their homes. Find the influencers who are reaching your target audiences and get them to speak on your behalf. Potential consumers will see and remember.
  • Content, Content, Content: Content is King, Queen, and Court Jester right now. If you’re not already, now is the time to ramp up your content game. One post is not going to cut it. Now is the time to be consistently in front of people with engaging, personable, and innovative content on all possible social media platforms.

 #2: Pay-Per-Click Advertising

AdWeek reported in late March that businesses had turned their focus to investing more in organic posts in lieu of pay-per-click advertising, presumably in an effort to preserve funds. As a result, cost per click declined significantly, meaning less investment for you and more bang for your buck. Right now is the perfect time to get in on the ground floor at a cheap price and get more relative space in an already over-saturated social media landscape . However, we’d recommend you implement this strategy ASAP before other businesses catch on.

 #3: Giving Your Customers What They Want

 It is critical to be attuned to your client base right now. They are most likely anxious, financially stressed, and desperately in need of positive distractions. Want to know why the Tiger King was so successful? It’s because it emerged the audience in a world that most of them were not a part of and, most importantly, was devoid of our current situation.

 A smart strategy right now is to offer consumers something that is low on investment and high on entertainment value that will distract them from their current environment. Although many businesses are running away from giving products away for free in a time when they have little financial wiggle room, we believe that this is the perfect time to grab your audiences’ attention by providing an opportunity to have fun, be distracted, and potentially get something great for free.

 For example, now is a great time to run a Sweepstakes. A Sweepstakes provides a much sought-after sense of hope and excitement for consumers without exorbitant investment. It’s easy and people have the time to enter. It’s a great way to attract new leads, increase traffic, generate buzz and, ultimately, drive sales.

We know that right now is an unprecedented and challenging time for most businesses and we hope these tips help you excel during and after the pandemic. For our part, US Sweepstakes would be glad to help your business succeed during this difficult time by helping you host a sweepstakes. We have been a leading sweepstakes management company for over 30 years and we pride ourselves on our roots in marketing and branding. We also offer insurance coverage so you know that your business is always protected. 

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