B2B IN LOCKDOWN #2: B2B TECH MARKETING - Stay safe and keep carrying on

By Sean Sharkey on 24 April 2020 14:55:47 BST

It feels petty discussing economics at a time when Covid 19 is indiscriminately rampaging through society, killing our most vulnerable.

But we’re just a marketing agency, not front line heroes or scientists, so we’ll stick to what we know and have an opinion on.

Truth is we won’t know the repercussions on the world economy until long after a vaccine is found. If indeed a vaccine is found. It’s a sobering thought.

At the moment, nation states are pumping out billions just to keep their engines stalled.

Consumer brands are suffering

For the foreseeable future, consumers won’t be consuming, producers won’t be producing and a lot of people in between are left twiddling their thumbs.

It feels insensitive for consumer brands to market themselves as they had been doing up to just a few weeks ago. Even recent TV ads have already aged beyond the point of relevance.

These days, people are just happy to get their hands (and arses) on any old bog roll, do you think they care which brand they buy? Same for all the other essentials. Nothing else really matters.

There is a long road ahead for many consumer brands, and you can be sure that advertising budgets are the first thing being cut.

Why B2B is different

For B2B brands, and in particular B2B tech, the situation is different.

If you offer some technology product or service that helps pave the way toward digital transformation, then perhaps nothing much has really change.

Digital transformation in all its guises was happening anyway. The current global pandemic crisis has only sped up the need for it.

And this goes far beyond remote working.

This is about new, more efficient and effective ways of digitising processes, automation, and finding better ways of doing almost every business function.

With technology constantly evolving this was always an inevitability. Recent events have only just emphasised its necessity and urgency.

For many companies, ramping up digital transformation might be their only hope of a future.

So what’s a digitally transformative B2B tech product/services brand to do in crisis times like this?

Our advice, carry on as normal. Maybe even ramp up your marketing.

It’s not about taking advantage of the situation. Marketing doesn't have to be an evil blight on society. It’s simply about offering solutions that are in demand. The same solutions you have always offered.

Just don’t be a dick about it.

Don’t exploit the situation. Don’t market yourself as some kind of champion resistance to a world under attack. Leave talk of pandemics to the scientists.

Stick to what you offer. Lay out the benefits. Be considerate. Have heart. Offer free trials or demos if you can. Be helpful. Be humane.

Squaredot is a B2B tech marketing agency, so we acknowledge we have a stake in this ground, but if you want our advice -

Stay safe, keep calm and carry on.