By now you may have heard that how Covid-19 pandemic has changed the normal. It has affected every business and digital marketing agencies are no different. There’s even a talk of a ‘Pre-COVID-19’ and ‘Post COVID-19’ world. It remains impossible to determine precisely the long-term impact of Covid-19 on digital marketing agencies and our working lives at the time of writing. However, we are noticing a few important trends that are going to stay –
1. Creating cash flow for clients: The global pandemic has hit businesses hard. According to a survey by The Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS), 66% of businesses said that their turnover or cash flow has been reduced. To help the clients have cash coming in, and coming in consistently, the agencies have to focus on core marketing activities to ensure short-term survival of their client’s business and will give you leeway to chart a long-term success plan for your clients.
2. Client communication: As most agencies are embracing work from home, the way marketing executives looked at client communication will also change. Before Covid-19, clients loved in-person meetings – and they were hard to avoid. But the travel restrictions brought about by the pandemic have severely affected such interactions. Agency executives are now meeting their clients and running pitch meetings over conference calls and video conferencing. With virtual communication becoming the norm, the focus lies squarely on the content and the way it’s presented. We are seeing more and more agency executives learning the ropes of virtual communication – when to speak, when to pause, when to mute your microphone, tonality, and body language.
Also, it’s the time to become partners to your clients and not vendors. As clients are cutting advertising budgets, it’s the time to have open communication with them and explain the best way ahead with no sugar-coating.
3. Work from home: It’s here to stay. Digital marketing agencies are heavily investing in remote work tools and are constantly improving their work processes. And there’s no indication that they will be returning to the old way of doing business anytime sooner. There’s a change even in the working hours of ad agency employees while they are working from home. This survey finds that 59 % of employees at advertising and marketing agencies are working longer hours during the pandemic.
4. Saying goodbye to the glamorous world of advertising: Frugality is the new buzzword in the industry. Gone are the days of agency executives flying business class, staying in posh hotels and attending lavish parties with free-flowing champagne. But the current crisis has hit the ‘fancy’ side of agency life and has forced the agencies to adapt to the new reality. They will be looking at a lot of things from a new perspective – hiring top talent without offering any frivolous amenities, how to do more with less, and how to stay agile?