COVID-19 came in quickly and businesses had to adapt to a new workplace. While the big focus was closing office spaces down and letting their employees work from home.
There’s another issue of the probability of marketing spend getting radically reduced. In fact, approximately 70% of businesses expect that they will or already have reduced their marketing spend for 2020.
This puts a lot of pressure onto B2B digital marketers forcing them to make tough decisions due to the impacts of COVID-19.
A B2B business will be active on multiple digital marketing platforms, whether that be Google, Ads, Facebook, LinkedIn, and so on but with reducing ad spend B2B digital marketers are faced with the decision of culling their spend.
The Best Approach: Content and Google Ads
If you’re a B2B digital marketer who happens to be ahead of the curve, hopefully, you would have started your content marketing from day one. And you should be relying on a healthy amount of your leads or conversions coming in from content marketing and organic search.
If you’re not, during COVID-19 is the best time to start. There are trends popping up almost daily which if you follow them close enough, you can be ahead of the trend before it takes off.
The best way to do this is to look at Google Trends daily and constantly be reading news throughout the day. Make sure you’re doing this for relevant news publications in every country and industry you’re involved in. If there’s one thing I’ve learned its that right now, everything is reactive and no two countries or industries are following the same trends.
In addition, I opted to keep our Google Ads running and stop everything else. Why? Google Ads takes months and months to build momentum back up. Keeping them on is in your best interest.
Most of the other platforms, like LinkedIn, Facebook, or other ad platforms can be set back up instantly and take 2 weeks to be fully optimised but Google is much more complicated and requires a very hands-on approach to optimisation.
So if you have a strong content marketing base, leave your Google Ads on, and by following what I said about trends, do the same for your ads. Add new campaigns as trends start to surface. Getting onto them as quickly as possible is the best thing you can be doing.
The Three Best Performing Digital Marketing Channels to use During COVID-19
So, let’s have a look at the best digital marketing channels to be using during COVID-19.
As mentioned, Google Ads is the best to keep running because it has the biggest reach and it’s the hardest to build back up should you decide to turn it off.
Google allows you to get your business in front of people who are actively searching for keywords related to your business.
For example, if someone is looking for an HR SaaS platform, you can directly target that keyword to put you at the top of the SERPs. This is something that not many other platforms offer (apart from Bing).
This one feature alone makes Google more relevant than any other platform.
The other reasons are, depending on your industry, it has relatively low CPC and, if you can identify trends as they’re happening you can get your campaigns up and running and ahead of the pack before the trends take off.
The Gartner Network
The Gartner Network is comprised of; Capterra, Software Advice and Get App. It’s the number one review platform and is essential for any B2B business in SaaS.
For a relatively small budget of $2,000 per month, you can easily generate 20-30 leads if you implement a good bidding strategy.
The reason why this platform is so important, is its low cost, low CPC, and low conversion cost.
It might not be as important as Google Ads as it can be turned off and on without any loss of momentum at any time.
In the time of COVID-19, you need to understand that marketing and the broad industries are all reactive. Meaning they’re constantly having to change. This means that B2B marketers need to be constantly staying up to date with new trends and working to predict new trends before they even happen.
Make sure you’re constantly reading news not only related to your industry but all of the states you operate in as well.
Then create content and set up new ads that target these keywords and locations directly.