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Managing Your Marketing Strategy During a Crisis

April 2nd, 2020 Cheri Hulse

As we enter Q2, marketing leaders are piecing together how they will adjust their crisis marketing strategy and tactics to meet their quarterly and annual goals. It would be an understatement to say that this quarter has been filled with disruptions. But with some certainty about what must change, despite the unrest, it is time to hunker down and put pen to paper for how marketing teams will be operating to drive business results. As we enter this new stage, I wanted to share some considerations for your crisis marketing strategy across technology, people and process:


Webinerd repairing

You may find yourself in several different scenarios as it relates to your martech and sales tech stacks. In some scenarios, for some mission-critical technologies, it accelerated the purchase. This could be something like a webinar, virtual experiences or video collaboration technology where the need became acute and you went through an accelerated purchasing process to meet the needs of your marketing organization.

Evaluation of your current martech stack — while these plans likely were put on hold for the past month — will likely pick up in the coming weeks. I can’t urge you enough to make sure you take the experiences of the past month into consideration. Think about what excelled and what held the marketing organization back during that period of time. Go back to the audit and evaluation and ensure they are up to date based on your recent experiences. The goal is to create a martech stack that can be resilient.


Webinerd in a green jacket adjusts data to reduce churn for her company.

New work environments and a disrupted crisis marketing strategy will certainly lead to changes in process. Rather than a team member walking to another’s cube to address a question or give a friendly reminder, now these communications are going digital and it can become overwhelming. 

Marketing during a crisis in an environment that is chaotic and not controlled can lead to preventable mistakes and errors that hinder the quality of your crisis marketing efforts. 

Look for ways to automate review processes through existing systems, so reminders are given by the system and humans are freed up to focus on other tasks.


A webinerd and her community dancing happily in a virtual circle

The outpouring of care for one another has been beautiful to watch. I’ve heard great stories of managers and teammates being there for one another and have found fun ways to get used to life in a more remote environment. As someone who hasn’t had an office in about five years, I’m happy to welcome everyone into this environment! The key at this point is to ensure team members feel comfortable and empowered to ask for what they need. One aspect may be helping team members get the appropriate technologies to set up their home office. Other team members will require increased flexibility due to the new working environment. Many people are juggling partners sharing tight spaces, young children and pets all demanding their attention. Be open to changes in meeting times to better accommodate these schedules.

Marketers are resilient and creative. Make sure you are patient with yourself and others, as well as remain open to new ideas and creative solutions to challenges when it comes to crisis marketing.