As the financial realities of the Covid-19 crisis really begin to bite, built environment businesses are facing perhaps the most challenging time in their history. Supply lines are faltering, workers are being prevented from completing jobs, and delivery schedules are going out the window – causing many contracts to be cancelled, in turn causing uncertainty and chaos.

But it’s not all doom and gloom. In fact, many businesses aren’t just planning to survive. They are taking the necessary steps to ensure they come out of this crisis stronger than ever.

Don’t just adapt and survive… plan to thrive

More than ever, what businesses do today will determine how well they fare in the future. And according to a recent survey from Marketing Week and Econsultancy, over half of all businesses polled have started changing their marketing strategy. But the steps most are taking are too small, often simply involving a change of messaging, knee jerk tactical actions and rejigged prices.

So beyond reassuring customers and cutting prices, what can leaders do to ensure their business gets through this climate of unprecedented uncertainty and bounce back in an even better position?

Move pre-emptively to seize advantages

At the start of this lockdown, Boston Consulting Group in their article COVID-19 Response: Big Decisions for CEOs Right Now emphasised the vital need to “move preemptively to seize advantage. It’s not only your frontline people who should be looking for pockets of opportunity. Even in difficult times, you should look for ways to capture market share where you can—whether it’s the result of behavioral changes as customers move online or to new channels, or because conditions allow you to buy distressed assets that will enhance your portfolio.”

This view has been echoed by leading management consultants across the UK. The advantages and opportunities are out there. Businesses just need to take the time, and professional guidance, to find them.

Using lockdown to level-up

Despite the obvious disadvantages of being locked down, there has never been a better time to get your house in order and level-up your marketing to ensure it delivers increased ROI.

While so many of your competitors remain in a state of flux during the lockdown, your business should be moving pre-emptively – and fast – to seize the advantages with a marketing strategy that shows you how to progress successfully while others duck and cover.

But, to do this, leaders first need to accurately assess the state of their business’s marketing to understand what’s needed to ensure it is fighting fit.

CMDi’s 10-point Crisis Marketing Health-Check and Action Plan will help you create a marketing strategy that cuts through the crisis:

1. What are your business and marketing objectives now vs. what they need to be to help you emerge stronger and future fit? What actions are required to re-focus your organisation’s current goals on what matters most right now?

2. How strong is your brand? What actions do you need to take to sharpen it for a new era of chaos and uncertainty?

3. How focused are you on evolving customer needs? What actions do you need to take to align your products and services to meet them, so you are best positioned to win short-term and longer-term share?

4. Is your customer segmentation, database and/or CRM system ready for a world where budgets need to be focused on only those customers that deliver growth and profit? What short term actions can you take to get it ready to impact on short-term sales and build a better approach for the longer-term?

5. How well do your communications drive action? What actions do you need to take to focus on the things that matter right now, to improve customer acquisition or build a bigger share of customer pockets?

6. Is your website focused on the right customers and the right calls to action? What actions are needed to improve customer journeys and deliver greater performance against only high priority goals?

7. Is your online offer ready to capitalise on the massive acceleration in online usage and demand to do more things online, whether purchasing, product search, or training and advice? What action plan can be developed to speed this up?

8. Is your content saying the right things to the right people to deepen engagement and trust – what actions are required to sharpen your messaging and creative to stand out in the crowd and provide authentic messages that build trust? How can you improve the impact of your social media and email marketing to increase its ROI?

9. Is your digital and performance marketing working as hard as it can? What more can you be doing to improve your online offer and make sure it gets found through intelligent SEO, PPC and remarketing?

10. How are you resourcing your marketing, what is your team capable and not capable of delivering quickly, or at all, and are the external partners you currently work with fit for action and delivering their services at optimal cost? Have you identified required changes both short and long-term to ensure your team and partners are working as efficiently as possible?

Crisis Marketing Health-Check icon

CMDi’s Crisis Marketing Health-Check is designed to ensure you manage your way out of the crisis with a strategy – not gut instinct.

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The chaos caused by the economic shutdown is taking a heavy toll on built environment businesses everywhere. Many marketing departments are in disarray, as the prolonged effects leave them wondering how to plan ahead. This is where independent, agile and specialist advice can make all the difference.

CMDi has a proven track record of steering built environment brands successfully through some of the most severe economic down-turns for over 20 years. We work closely with clients at all levels to help them restore strategic order and take back control with cost-effective action.

Our unique methodology ensures a collaborative approach, but one that minimises the time, input and effort required by our clients – leaving them to focus on business priorities during the chaos, while we get them ready to activate a new approach to fast track out of the crisis.

We’re currently working with leading brands to accelerate customer-focussed actions such as personalisation and segmentation strategies, to data driven performance marketing to radically improve ROI.

We’re ready to do the same for you.

Request your marketing health-check to assess how to emerge fighting fit from this crisis