Dramatic changes in the what, how, and why people buy

Issue:

While job losses have been high, there are still millions of people who are employed. And for many, the net effect of the pandemic is that they're left with extra cash… living without the expenses of a commute, business apparel, dining out, and other cost-savings that come with working from home. So there are pockets of spending that are doing really, really well right now. But that phenomenon is balanced by supply-chain shortages in some categories and looming concerns about how long and severe an economic downturn could last. Some of these dynamics were well covered in a story from Reuters today.

Opportunity/Idea:

There has never been a more important time for businesses to revisit and refine their marketing strategy, and you have tools to help. Whether you're using the Marketing Strategy Model from the Center for Sales Strategy, or doing a more informal marketing strategy review, it is critical for companies to make sure they're focusing on the right target consumer, and the most important reasons those people buy a particular product or service. Who a company's prospects are—and their motivations for buying—have dramatically changed in some business categories.

Ways you might use this issue to gain an appointment:

  • Send a note explaining that "I thought of you when I saw this story from Reuters. It would be a good idea for us to have a conversation about how your definition of an ideal customer may have changed over the past few months, as well as that consumer's most important influences when they're making decisions in your category. Our team has been trained in facilitating focused marketing strategy sessions, and I'd like to make that assistance available to you."
  • Or, your message might sound more like this: "A lot of the clients I work with are realizing the need to not just plan for today's consumer landscape, but also give some thought to how their messaging should be adjusted as the pandemic becomes a little more protracted and the effects of the recession evolve over time. (Some of the same issues are addressed in this article from Reuters.) We have a tool to help design contingency plans for your marketing and messaging that we refer to as an Adaptive Planning outline. It would be a good idea for us to talk it through and help your company be ready for what's next.

Using this issue in a Needs Analysis:

  • The job losses resulting from the pandemic have been well documented, but there are still a lot of people who are gainfully employed out there, of course! But with this dynamic labor market, are you seeing a shift in who you consider to be "the ideal customer" for your business?
  • How have conditions like "work from home" impacted the way people shop and buy in your category? How have they changed the way you message to prospective buyers?

Sources:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-consumer-pricing-i/coffee-ketchup-and-nike-air-max-its-the-covid-consumer-economy-idUSKBN25S4SB

https://olc.thecenterforsalesstrategy.com/Download.ashx?ID=2573

https://www.dropbox.com/s/7ptu4j1r01z1r5i/03%20-%20Marketing%20Strategy%20Review%2001-15-2020.pdf?dl=0

https://www.dropbox.com/s/8keh1mty4szkqlz/08%20-%20Adaptive%20Planning%2005-29-2020.pdf?dl=0

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