COVID-19 Action Plan (6 Steps You Need To Do Right Now)

SocialB Digital Marketing Blog Last modified: 09 Apr 2020 by Matthew McKillop
Digital Strategy

The world is full of Coronavirus/COVID-19 news, but very little of it is about what businesses can do in response to it right now.

We’ve been working on our clients’ responses to the CV-19 situation and have come up with an action plan that all businesses should immediately take when communication is more important than ever:

Step 1. Work out what you can still offer

Many businesses will need to start thinking digital-first. How would this look for your business and its sales funnel?

Here are some ideas we’ve helped implement for our clients:

  • Book a Demo changed to Book a Skype Demo
  • In-Person Courses changed to Online Courses
  • Book a Table changed to Order for Delivery
  • Visit Our Showroom changed to Interact with a 3D Tour of our Showroom

Step 2. Add a banner to your website

It doesn’t need to be complicated (see ours at the bottom of your browser window), it just needs to communicate what you currently are and aren’t able to offer at this time (ideally with a link to further information in the form of an official statement or update).

Use one of these (or whatever you use currently if you already have one set up).

You will want to be careful that it isn’t getting lost behind cookie notices or other notices that you may have dismissed, but your new website visitors will still see. Try looking at your site in an incognito window before adding a banner.

You can also use a slide-in if a banner is too inconvenient. I would recommend avoiding a pop-up unless your update will have a significant impact on your customer experience (e.g. longer processing times).

Step 3. Post on your social media channels

Now it’s time to update your social followers with your current situation and offering.

Here is the message we put out:

(Remember to pin this update to the top.)

Step 4. Update your Google My Business profile

Sign in to your GMB account then head over to ‘Posts’.

Depending on the changes you’ve had to make to your business, update your profile using these new post types:

  • Temporary closure
  • New operating hours
  • Changes to regular service (e.g. delivery only)
  • Safety precautions taken
  • Stock levels (In-stock, low stock, or out of stock)

Think “if I were searching for my business, what would I need to know ASAP”.

Step 5. Email your current customers and warm leads

As with your website banner and social posts, you must update your current customers if they are repeat buyers (e.g. perishable goods). You don’t need to send an email to someone who bought from you once 2 years ago, they will see your website’s banner or social post if they visit either.

As for your leads in the pipeline – let them know what you can and cannot do for them at this stage. Think about how you can adapt your offering to still serve them. Maybe use this opportunity to offer a catch-up call.

Step 6. Change the calls-to-action, forms and wording on your website

Now that you’ve got a plan and have updated your website visitors, social media followers and email database, it’s time to look at your website and adapt it accordingly.

The reason this has been saved until last is because the previous steps focus on getting your updates to as many people as possible, the details of your CTAs will be seen by fewer people than those that see the banner, social media post and email put together.

Think about what information you need to be able to hold a Skype meeting with a potential client and add those fields to your forms. What fields can you remove from your forms? Remember to make a back-up of everything that you can put live again once things start to go back to semi-normality.

Further Reading

Founder of MOZ and globally-recognised Digital Marketer, Rand Fishkin, has written some insightful articles on what businesses and marketers need to prioritise right now. Read them here:

Don’t Battle This Alone!

We are working with businesses every day to help adapt their strategies to this unprecedented situation.

Ask for a call with one of our team members and we can battle this together.

Stay safe, and remember, if there ever was a time to be altruistic to your customers and followers, the time is now.

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