3 Tips for Innovating in a Time of Crisis
“If there ever were a time to pay attention to the ‘consumer on the couch,’ it is right now,” says Tyler Horsley. Horsley is a digital entrepreneur and CEO of Nuclear Networking, a Denver-based digital marketing agency serving the needs of multiple Pepsi-Cola divisions and Quicksilver Scientific.
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“All business is witnessing collective global behavior change right before our very eyes. It’s not just a consumer shift; it is a consumer tsunami,” Horsley says. He provides some examples:
- More than a quarter of U.S. respondents told Coresight that they are avoiding public areas at least somewhat, and 58 percent said they plan to if the outbreak worsens. Of those who have already altered their routines, more than 40 percent say they are “avoiding or limiting visits to shopping centers/malls” and more than 30 percent are avoiding stores in general.
- The e-commerce sales of health products have increased 52 percent compared to the same time frame last year and the number of online shoppers has increased by 8.8 percent, according to the SaaS platform provider Quantum Metric.
- The global coronavirus pandemic is affecting consumer behavior worldwide. In the week ending March 22, online traffic in the supermarket segment increased by 161.4 percent compared to the reference period in January and February 2020, according to Statista.
“Nuclear Networking understands the value that lies on the web; we are seeing an emerging and unique trend that large companies aren’t the only ones that can leverage web-based marketing right now,” Horsley says. “In fact, we see a timely and realistic opportunity for Main Street businesses to thrive in what is essentially a level playing field.”
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With more and more people at home, Nuclear Networking offers Wall Street capability tailored for Main Street practicality. Here are three tips for competing in a time of crisis with limited resources.
Start with a competitor deconstruct. What are your competitors doing to optimize their digital presence?
“It is hard to focus on someone else’s business in the middle of your own crisis,” says Horsley. “If you take the time to study what your competitors are doing or more importantly, not doing, you can leap forward with limited dollars.”
Recently, one of Nuclear Networking’s customers conducted an analysis to look at how their competitors were responding to the pandemic. By promoting a line of products and repositioning the company from B2B to B2C, a 10K investment was turned into $1.7 million.
Look back to move forward. Where were you spending dollars? More importantly, why? Is your business running on autopilot?
“This is the time to analyze every marketing line item and reallocate resources,” says Horsley. “As you look back at buyer behavior 90 days ago, what has changed as it relates to your market space? Look into the ‘new normal’ for the next 90 days, establish affinity, build new customers using proven digital marketing strategies and carry it on post-COVID-19.”
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Do not under invest. Savvy investors stay calm and know that the time to buy is when the market is down.
“If you invest now, you will get more for your money and you will be poised to be in front of customers who are buying more online,” says Horsley. “This will retain them for when they are ready to open their wallets again.”
By doing these three things, you maintain the health of your own company and prepare yourself and your employees for a post-COVID-19 future.
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