I have been having discussions with clients over the past couple of weeks about working remotely during the #Coronavirus Crisis. However, #TRIAGE is now needed for the process of determining the priority of clients, brands as well as the treatments of patients’ based on the severity of their condition.
That’s why I decided to share some of my TOP TIPS based on my global experience working on Fortune 500 Clients from: New York to San Francisco to Hong Kong, London, Singapore, Taiwan, New Zealand, Canada, Germany, Mexico, Indonesia, United Arab Emirates and Australia.
‘Successful brands and companies do not abandon their marketing strategies in a recession; they adapt them.’
I’d like to share some very valuable tips, gained from my extensive experience in direct marketing, digital marketing and retailing during past recessions.
These tips will help you to maintain both loyalty and quality by consolidating initiatives that will help you OR your organization save money as well as maximize your client & customer impact.
I specifically used the word TRIAGE above because, with today’s sliding stockmarket, economy and pandemic, the application of the 4 Categories of SIMPLE TRIAGE & RAPID TREATMENT align perfectly with today’s business environment. By that I mean:
- IMMEDIATE – Life Threatening and requires immediate care
- DELAYED – Urgent Care, but can delay for an hour
- MINOR – ‘Walking Wounded’, can delay for up to three hours
- DECEASED – Mortally Wounded – no care required
Working remotely can deliver all four PLUS the bonus of flexibility because no one is locked into the 9 am to 5pm mindset as well as:
- No daily commute.
- The reduction of distractions.
- The ability to travel and live anywhere, including outside of major cities.
- Increased productivity.
- And of course, the ability to be closer to your family.
SOME OF THE KEY THINGS I HAVE ALSO LEARNED FROM WEATHERING RECESSIONS:
- In a recession, marketing and new business is still necessary and smart marketing is the key. Past research has consistently illustrated, sales of those Agencies and companies rose 256% plus over their competitors, who had not maintained their marketing.
- From my Direct Marketing, Retail and Digital experiences, I certainly understand that during recessions and tough times, everyone must shift focus towards increasing revenue from current customers/clients, either through more frequent purchases, or larger ones.
In fact, Email marketing is the perfect vehicle for communicating with customers and incentivizing additional purchases. Customer lifecycle marketing (persuasively combining email with direct mail, voicemail and text messaging) will gain favor as companies strive to close a higher percentage of a reduced flow of leads.
- ‘FISH WHERE THE FISH ARE’. In other words, reutilize your client’s budget(s) to target those most likely to respond. Focusing only on the demographics of your “perfect customer” and weeding out those prospects that cannot afford or would not have a need for your product.
- Go on the ‘offense’ with – Early-buy allowances, extended financing, and generous return policies you can motivate distributors to stock your full product line.
- Price cuts attract more consumer support than promotions. In tough times like this coronavirus pandemic
- ‘FOCUS” on family values. When economic hard times loom, we tend to retreat to our villages and our clients and brands. That’s because they can provide comfort and trust that you can build and extend upon.
- Be prepared to negotiate. If you have ‘Brands’ with deep pockets you may also be able to negotiate favorable advertising rates and lock them in for several years. If you have to cut marketing spend, try to maintain the frequency of advertisements by shifting from 30-second to 15-second advertisements, substituting radio for television advertising, or increasing the use of direct marketing, which gives more immediate sales impact.
- Establish your own Daily Routine. Make sure to discuss your remote work hours with your boss or manager before you begin. Importantly, once those hours are established, make a point of sticking to them. Within that “block” of time, divide up your subroutines. For example, if you feel more energized in the morning, handle your biggest and most complex tasks then.
- Communicate Frequently. When in doubt, be sure to communicate with other colleagues and managers on your team who are also working remotely. This will help you remain top-of-mind with them. And, don’t forget to liaise daily with your colleagues in other offices on delivery plans, check the demos, present to the client and provide feedback to the implementation teams.
- Create Your Remote Work Space – Whether you work remotely from home, a co-working space, or a coffee shop, make sure that you have dedicated space that’s “yours” to work in (which is hard to do in a coffee shop). It can help you psychologically if that space is solely devoted to work; after a few weeks, you’ll instinctively know when it’s time to lock down as soon as you sit down.
- Schedule time for socializing – I recommend kicking off everyday with a ‘group call’ with your team to ensure you’re all getting on the same page, staying tight, motivating each other and pushing each other for excellence and even greater productivity!
- Do postmortems on key projects – other important components of working remotely must include planning and scheduling ‘postmortems’ for every project on your schedule. Weekly ‘work-in-progress’ sessions should also be established and ‘set in stone’. From my own personal experience, Monday mornings are the single best time to plan the week’s work. BUT, a ‘close of play’ Friday session also ensures that no balls are dropped.
There’s no ‘one-size-fits-all’ formula for working remotely. Everyone and every organization has different work styles. Different times at which they work productively. Different work locations. Different time zones. Different access to technologies, tools and systems. E.g. via Zoom, GoToMeeting, Cisco Webex Meetings or Skype
I firmly believe employees who shine working remotely are those who are the most resourceful, collaborative, emotionally stable and autonomous. Working remotely can also be a super benefit for staff, but it should also align with management’s goal of, well, doing less managing.
To your continued success and move towards more targeted marketing efforts, email, digital marketing efforts and loyalty programs!
Finally, I have seen how a number of the most successful leaders have been visionary during ‘tough times’ and all have continued to emphasize their core values. It works so do it!
More about Geoff De Weaver:
Super strategist who directs B2B & Fortune 500 clients to define their vision, create a strategy, and harness their internal innovation to grow their business or reinvent their products.
Expert at building and transforming brands, businesses, and digital and physical customer experiences at scale.
History of success developing and executing cross-channel global marketing campaigns to drive brand positioning, equity, and awareness while increasing engagement and sales and loyalty.
Innovative entrepreneur, author, speaker, and advertising executive with vast expertise driving business growth, reinventing brands, and implementing global marketing campaigns.
Connect with me at:
Twitter at: https://twitter.com/geoff_deweaver
Amazon Authors: https://www.amazon.com/Geoff-De-Weaver/e/B007DAEKFG
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