Marine marketing has changed during the coronavirus pandemic. In a world where it’s not easy if at all possible, to meet with customers face-to-face, now is the time where your business’s communications team needs to stay in contact with customers more than ever.
Communication with your employees, customers, clients, and guests is critical. By communicating effectively, you’ll be able to manage your business, set expectations efficiently, and keep your boating business up and running.
Here are some steps to keep your customer relationships alive and stay alert for new business opportunities during this time of the unknown.
It is a vital time to increase your online marketing efforts and business profile. Increase your newsletters, offer support to prospects and customers, keep them posted with industry news.
Remember that every marketing effort you put in does not have to have the intentions of a hard sell. Share what’s going on internally within your company, and any products or services that are unaffected. Keep customers updated on how you will be operated this time and offer them some valuable resources through your online platforms.
Because of the rapidly growing digital nature of the world during the COVID-19 pandemic, if you are putting little to no effort into your online presence, you risk customers thinking you went out of business OR customers being confused about your current operations and not wanting to do the deep search themselves.
A lot of people are working from home right now which is already a huge shift. Communicating as if nothing has changed could be taken as insensitive. In order to prevent that, think about how to speak with customers with the reality of the world’s situation in mind.
Figure out how you can still be a resource to your customers in the current environment and be open about how they can safely interact with your boat dealership or business.
Now is a great time to consider investigating new markets. If you find any new markets beneficial to your business, you can already hit the ground running when the world goes back to “normal.” Clear out your customer relationship management system (CRM). This will ensure that you have up to date contact information, and the right data to reach your target customers.
While the coronavirus pandemic still threatens the physical world, many events in the marine industry are transforming to virtual platforms. While it may not feel the same as going to your typical boat show or conference, companies still have valuable information to share with those involved within the marine industry.
Keep customers in-the-know about which events your business is participating in, or events you know your audience will love. Webinars or Instagram/Facebook live videos are a great idea in terms of virtual events that your business could personally host.
Even if you’re new to the online world, the digital communication skills you learn now will be a huge asset to your marine company in the post-COVID-19 world, where virtual business is going to be far more common.
If social media is not already a role in your marketing strategy, there’s no better time than now to start implementing it. Social media is becoming a huge asset to those in the digital marketing world.
The various platforms offer a great opportunity to share business information, and details about your products, services, boats, etc. Although, social media isn’t just for marketing.
Social media is like a giant group chat with people in your niche. With the right social media strategy and research, you can use these platforms to take your business-customer relationships to the next level. Then when the world hopefully returns to normal, they will remember you and might choose to do business with you.
If you have more time on your hands than normal, now is a great time to dive in and get them done. In the marketing realm, this could mean planning and batching things like videos, rebranding your company, creating a white-paper or case study, developing a new product, etc.
One of the most overlooked facets of marketing is SEO, because it can be time confusing and event intimidating.
An important piece of advice to take in is to follow safety precautions in the event that you do interact with customers face-to-face. This shows a sign of respect and lets them know that while you are super excited to do business with them, you are also considerate of their safety as well as your own.
Be smart, be safe, and let your customers know what steps your business is taking to offer them a safe experience.
Digital marine marketing is a powerful tool that can make or break a business today, especially during the Coronavirus pandemic.
If you would like more industry-specific ideas for communicating with your customers and clients during this unpredictable time, the experts at Boat Marketing Pros are happy to help.