Small businesses never had the budget or bandwidth for business travel. Exhibiting at a trade show on the opposite coast? We can’t have that many people out of the office at the same time. Travelling overseas for sales prospecting? Too cost-prohibitive. Small businesses have to watch every cent spent, and if there’s no clear ROI, it’s not worth it.
Then along came COVID-19, and the way the world worked got turned on its head, including small businesses. Hop on a plane for a two-hour sales meeting? The pandemic has taught us that a video call can work just as well. Why drive into the office every day, racking up kilometres, and wasting valuable time commuting, when video allows you to have a presence while you work from home?
We’ve gotten used to this new way of working. I don’t ever see it going back to how it used to be. Ever. And we can thank the power of video for that.
Employers, employees, and their families looking inward and concerned about their safety, prospects, and customers lost their appetite for being marketed. In some instances, the old ways of marketing were immediately antiquated. B2B telemarketing, for example, doesn’t work if there’s no one in the office to take your call. Nobody wants to hop on a crowded plane to go to a crowded trade show.
But the pandemic has proved to us that video – whether for sales, events, demand generation, storytelling, or internal comms – is the most powerful medium in the marketer’s arsenal. When deployed properly, video is the great equaliser for small businesses.
Here are a few examples of what post-pandemic marketing can look like for small businesses:
Integration – For years, marketers have needed to better ingrain their technology and approaches. When video is driving marketing – from email campaigns to landing pages to product demos to brand storytelling – the video platform will increasingly become a core marketing platform. This is the place to create, manage, distribute, and measure marketing content. Every marketing tool needs to interoperate with your video platform.
Hybrid events – Trade shows, sales kick-offs, company meetings. They have all been a huge line item in any marketers’ budget. With a questionable ROI. During the COVID lockdown, many companies realised virtual events could be very successful, especially with the ability to preserve and monetize the video content they streamed. And virtual events can be great equalisers, ensuring that all employees have a voice and a presence. Not just those in the home office.
A “TV” channel for every organisation – This approach was unheard of for small businesses. It would take armies of programmers, too much time, and way too much money. But today, video technology is here for even small businesses to host their own Netflix-style streaming service built around their unique brand. Video platforms can transform web pages into an array of videos with content, channels, and journeys tailored to every type of user. Watch your engagement go through the roof.
Small businesses have traditionally had to build and support marketing programs with one hand tied behind their back. Budgets were too small. Technology was too hard, and the staff was difficult to find. While the pandemic has been challenging in so many ways, it has taught us how to adapt, adjust and perform. And video has been the main driver…it’s cost-effective, convenient, powerful, smart, and accessible to all.