There is no doubt that the rapidly emerging digital marketing is challenging the traditional marketing practices, especially in the COVID-19 pandemic. Therefore, it is necessary to thoroughly redesign the marketing and communication strategies of each enterprise in order to meet the urgent needs of the current digital transformation.
By analyzing the consumer behavior in the pandemic, this article believes that at present, the construction and operation of social media and websites is an effective way for enterprises to complete the digital transformation and attract more potential consumers.
Consumer Behavior in this Pandemic
How can enterprises get closer to consumers more quickly during and after the pandemic, which requires business owners to understand consumer behavior fully.
Consumer behavior is the ability of individual customers, groups, or organizations to choose and purchase goods and services to meet their needs, which means that it refers to the behavior of consumers in the market and the underlying motivation of these behaviors (Smriti 2017).
Traditional consumer behavior is affected by product prices, packaging, and store locations. However, during COVID-19, consumer behavior has changed dramatically. People live different lives, buy in different ways, and think differently, which means that consumers around the world are paying attention to products and brands from a new perspective.
As a result of outbreaks and related social distance measures, the way people spend their leisure time is changing, and these habits are likely to continue. More than half (61%) plan to continue to watch more news through social media and web pages after the outbreak, while 55% will give priority to spending time with their families. Entertainment, learning, and DIY also increased (Accenture 2020).
This trend is reflected in the products and services that consumers are downloading and buying related to entertainment, news, health care and education. Basic consumer needs (for example, connectivity, entertainment, learning, to be informed) remain the same, but technology is changing the way it happens. 46% of people have gone from going to the workplace to working from home, which may also affect the way they shop (Accenture 2020).
After the change of consumer behavior, how do enterprises catch consumers?
- Social media
According to the above, more than half of people choose to stay at home to survive the pandemic. Not only that, this phenomenon will even accompany the future production and life of mankind.
In this case, consumers’ shopping and access to information must start with digital platforms, such as social media, which means that business owners want to get consumers, social media must be a great starting point (AMP 2020).
Social media is interactive, which means it can help you quickly approach and interact with consumers. This is not just about creating and publishing social media content, but also about cherishing the opportunity to interact with consumers (AMP 2020).
Create all possible social media channels, which may include Facebook,Twitter,LinkdIn and Instagram. Each of these channels provides an opportunity to stay in touch and strengthen your relationship with your customers, so use the most relevant platform.
For example, Facebook is better suited for publishing daily blogs, company updates, and the latest services and offers. As a platform for publishing opinions and statements, Twitter can provide a platform for the exchange of ideas and information related to the main business of your enterprise. LinkdIn is a workplace communication platform on which you can expand the influence of the enterprise as much as possible and find more suitable staff. For Instagram, it focuses on visual expressive stories, such as posting corporate gallery and any meaningful photos to Instagram, which may also increase some organic traffic.
At present, most enterprises can provide websites for potential consumers to browse the company’s services and products. Therefore, this is a key factor for you to get consumers in these difficult times.
Throughout the pandemic, many companies had to close stores temporarily to keep employees and customers safe.
However, even if your company is still closed, it is important to keep in mind that the Internet is open 24 hours a day. Because shoppers may no longer be able to walk into your store doesn’t mean demand falls or they stop shopping altogether, they just find a new way to buy (CW 2020).
Your website may tend to be displayed for target consumers, or it may be to provide online services, such as booking, online payment, etc. These features ensure that your consumers can find your brand at home and even place an order for their next service or an item at home. There is no doubt that online purchase and booking are also the most in line with current consumer habits.
This article found that with the outbreak of COVID-19, more than 60 % of people stay at home to shop and surf the Internet, and more than 50% work from home, which makes the era of consumers going to physical stores to buy and consult goods and services gone forever.
At present, all business owners need to consider how to effectively solve the needs of consumers for online access to information and shopping.
This paper argues that the operation of social media and the construction of websites are effective ways to attract potential consumers during and after the COVID-19 pandemic. Different social media have different functions, and they can help target consumers on different media platforms quickly discover and notice the business of the company, and expand the reputation and brand of firms. As an important display link of the enterprise business, the website can bring more traffic to the enterprise, and it is also the process of shaping the brand. At the same time, as consumers are now used to online shopping, adding online shopping to the website can also help consumers buy their favorite products at home during the pandemic.
AMP Official Website 2020, ‘How to stay connected to your customers during coronavirus’, AMP insights on COVID-19. Retrieved from https://www.amp.com.au/insights/COVID-19/stay-connected-with-customer-base-during-coronavirus
Accenture 2020, ‘COVID-19: How consumer behavior will be changed’, Now & Next, pp.1-4. Retrieved from https://www.accenture.com/us-en/insights/consumer-goods-services/coronavirus-consumer-behavior-research
CW·Marketing 2020, ‘The importance of a website during COVID-19’, Blog. Retrieved from https://www.cwmarketing.co.uk/the-importance-of-a-website-during-covid-19/
Cliff, W 2011,’ Digital Marketing: The Time for a New “Academic Major” Has Arrived’, Journal of Marketing Education, vol.33, no.1, pp.93-106. Retrieved from https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0273475310392544
Smriti, C 2017, ‘Nature of Consumer Behaviour’, Your Ariticle Library. Retrieved from https://www.yourarticlelibrary.com/marketing/market-segmentation/consumer-behaviour-meaningdefinition-and-nature-of-consumer-behaviour/32301