How & Why To Market During COVID-19 For WNY Business Owners

Hey before you read any further I just want to say off the bat if you haven’t listened to my two “How to market your business for FREE” podcast episodes that I put out a few months ago, I would. There is part 1 and part 2. I’ve received a TON of great feedback from it.

Here is the link for that 


If you’re a small business owner you’re probably wondering:

How should I market my business during this time?

Should I even market my business during this time? The answer is absolutely YES but more on that in a minute.

2 things we are going to talk about.

  1. Why it’s more important than ever to advertise.
  2. How to take advantage of the market right now.

Why it’s a good idea to advertise right now

All Your Customers and potential clientele expect a response or reaction out of your business.

No matter who your customers are, they will expect to hear a proactive response from you. They’ll want to know some basic information, including:

I’m not just talking about “What your organization is doing to keep your employees and the public safe”

But if it will that affect in any way shape or form on how they are going to get a hold of you? How they can get your products? If yes, then how?

Can they get a discount if they put a down payment down on your services or use them in this crazy time?

Is there a different service you provide that hasn’t been promoted a lot by you that they can use?

All this needs to get out there!

If we crawl into a hole and just let this thing take its course and just cancel all your advertising YOU ARE MISSING A HUGE OPPORTUNITY.

There are going to be hundreds and maybe even thousands of businesses in Western New York that are going to set themselves up nicely from this epidemic?

How and Why? Because they didn’t think small and just did what everybody else did.

They innovated, they didn’t stop advertising.

This article is NOT one idea, one size fits all. I understand every business is different.

However, there is a gift in every negative situation.

Staying Top of Mind For Prospects

Even if your customers aren’t buying right now, you can stay at the top of their minds by considering their needs and providing value through challenging times.

During trying times and after people remember who stepped up.

They remember them and if they see an ad over and over again. Especially a memorable one. That will be engrained in their minds for a long time.

Fewer businesses are advertising right now more than ever and that’s great for YOU.

Most people out of fear sell their stocks low when they should be buying. If you arent advertising right now you are selling low and not buying at the right time.

If people are pulling back on advertising out of fear then that means your name is going to stick out more.

A lot of advertising avenues are giving amazing deals right now because they need the business.

This is buying at the lowest point and reaping at the highest points? WHY and HOW you ask?

People are home now than ever.

In-home publications, social media, commercials etc are being seen now more than ever.

People are bored.

People want to consume more material now than ever.

More eyeballs for the less the amount of money.

How to market during COVID-19

Be mindful of how your business fits into the big picture.

For example, restaurants aren’t able to offer dine-in options so a lot of them are offering delivery options right now. Are You?

If I was a business right now that was 100% closed and can’t function I would be offering insane deals on gift cards or deposits for future services.

If I’m struggling to keep the lights on I need to think differently and do something differently.

Does your business


What Entrepreneurs Should Be Thinking Right Now

  1. How to get ahead of their competitors

First off, take care of your current clients and go out of your way to make sure they know you have their back. A lot of other businesses would their business right now. In fact, they are probably trying to gain their attention.

With current or potential clients anything you are trying to do is better than doing nothing. Do something different, thoughtful and full of compassion. Think outside the box. How I do this is surrounding myself with deep thinkers who love helping. Plenty of those people in Western New York.

  1. Learn more about your target audience

What is your target market doing differently during this time? A lot. Find out what and how you can fit into this with your business or services. How can you grab their attention? Even if it has nothing to do with your current services.

What would motivate them to purchase?

What behaviors do they have?

What age group, gender, location is your ideal target market and what are they thinking about right now?

  1. Build Relationships with Potential Consumers

One thing I have found out during this time is that people have more time now than ever to connect. I have connected with business owners that I’ve been trying to nail down a time to meet for years. I did a zoom call with them. I’m pretty sure I never would have been able to get a meeting if this epidemic didn’t happen.

This is a great chance to connect with old customers and potential customers.

I would do a relationship-building through social media on my business page. Postpositive material and stimulate people to want to post and share on your content.

For example, I do a neighborhood magazine for affluent neighborhoods. I asked residents on our Instagram page to chalk positive encouraging words on their driveway and send them in. This provided great content and connected me with the neighborhood in a way that probably wouldn’t have otherwise. You can do the same thing with your business even if it has nothing to do with your services. The point is it gets eyeballs on your brand and business.

I’m going to say this to the people in the back. DON’T JUST POST ABOUT YOUR SERVICES. Everyone is doing that.

Please don’t bother with the posts “Everyone post their business on this page and we will reach out if we are interested? Who wants to walk into 30-40 sales pitches in a comment section? I don’t.

Do something different. Build genuine relationships. Create better authentic content.

  1. Create success for your business post COVID- 19

Business is a long term game. Not a short one. This epidemic is going to be a very short part of our history. It’s going to pass. Do you want to play catch up when its over or already hit the ground running?

Imagine when this is all over:

  • You built awesome relationships with current and potential customers because you took advantage of the time you/others had been quarantined.
  • You already have branding with your target clientele and now they are all ready to purchase.
  • People only think of you because they saw you consistently because didn’t bail on your advertising and building an authentic connection with them.
  • They know you’re proactive versus reactive because they knew exactly how to do business with you during this time. They know you’re on top of everything.
  • You now know your target market better and understand how to reach them better.
  • And most important. You now know you are a leader and innovator in your industry that backs up what everybody else says in their mission statement but most don’t do.
  • You now know you are a leader and you built a solid foundation for yourself.

This will all be over soon. My question is, what are you going to be saying when its all over?

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