In some ways, it feels laughable to write this post. There’s a good chance it will look woefully outdated a month from now.

I mean, it was just over a month ago that I flew in an airplane, shopped at retail stores, and hosted a birthday party. Now I think twice before scratching my nose, so who knows what the next few months will look like.

What is clear is that the way you’ve marketed your business in the past is toast (for now, maybe forever).

What We’re Seeing Now

Do these phrases sound familiar?

  • In these uncertain times…
  • The things that truly matter…
  • We’re stronger when we’re united…
  • Come together as one…

You’ve seen or heard a hundred variations on those themes in ad after ad after ad for the past month. [Cue the dramatic piano and violin instrumentals.]

Thin-sliced frozen beef company and sudden Twitter sensation Steak-Umm said it best:

Steak-Umm Marketing

Really, all brands right now are essentially saying the same thing: “Things are hard. Buy a Toyota.”

Yes, we are living in an unprecedented time of sickness, economic collapse, and complete upheaval of our way of life. But we all know it, and we’re tired of being told about it by every brand that has our email address.

What is clear is that the way you’ve marketed your business in the past is toast (for now, maybe forever).

What To Do Instead

The status quo has completely gone out the window, the over-dramatic approach is quickly wearing thin, and you don’t want to be tone-deaf to the current experience of your clients and customers.

So what should your marketing look like in light of all that? Here are a few ideas, based on what we’re seeing with our own clients:

  • Focus on the positive: What is happening in your orbit that you can celebrate? Maybe it’s a food bank you partner with, healthcare workers in your company’s extended family, or employees finding creative ways to work while educating their kids.
  • Focus on the opportunity: For some companies, their services are more relevant now than ever—they just need to get the messaging right. If you mow lawns, you’re no longer saving your customers time, you’re now creating a beautiful space for them to enjoy with family as they spend more time at home. How do you need to reframe your products/services to connect with people where they are?
  • Focus on the pivot: For other businesses, there’s a need to pivot products or services to meet current needs—whether that’s distilleries making hand sanitizer, farmers shipping meat or produce direct to consumers, restaurants creating family-style takeout options, or retail stores developing subscription models.

As Eric wrote the other day, America 2.0 is here, and it’s up to you whether you’ll take the steps needed for your business to adapt and thrive.

Need more ideas? We’ve got ‘em.

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