Digital Marketing After The Current Crisis

I am sure you have heard the saying May you live in interesting times. Well, in case you wanted to know how these “interesting times” look like, we are now all living one of those. If you have been following my blog, it is not about medicine, so I will not give you any advice on health. I am more interested in how this crisis will affect those of us living in the digital marketing world. My intention with this post is to be some sort of forum, where we can all share our ideas. I will start with my view and I would like to read yours.

Future? What future?

For better or worse, my brain spends a lot of time in overdrive. So, it was natural that, as the crisis loomed, I started to think about the future, my future. I am a not a fortune teller and I do not have a crystal ball, but I have been thinking in different situations that we can face after the crisis.

Bigger digital market

The lockdowns that are happening and will happen everywhere, will force everybody to shop online. Once the crisis is over, many people will not switch back to brick-and-mortar shops. So, the consequence will be that digital marketing will become even more important than before. In this situation, all of you reading this blog should have a stable job.

If you are reading this from USA or UK, you may think that this has already happened and you would be forgiven. In these two countries, the online market is big, very big. I do not have the numbers, but I know that some online retailers in the UK sell more online than in shops. As an example, many years ago, a Londoner was telling me how happy he was that he had done all his Christmas shopping without setting foot on the street.

However, in the rest of the world, people still prefer to go shopping to the high street. In Spain, I would even say it is a social activity. Can this crisis change the behaviour of millions?

More savings

As with all financial crisis, people will save a lot of money. And this time there is an additional “incentive”: nobody will be allowed to spend any money on bars, cafes, restaurants, cinemas, theatres, hotels, flights… With a lot of money in savings accounts and people banned from having a good time spending it, there will be a need to release the pressure. Millions of people will want to enjoy life once they are free again, with money in the bank.

Now, the questions is… how will the people spend their savings?

The marketer who places the bet on the winning number, will make a lot of money.

More unemployment

It is a fact that, during a crisis, many companies lay off part of their staff. The consequence is that these people lose their income and, therefore, will cut down their expenses. Also, this situation will affect negatively the previous point: these people will save less money, not more.

In general, this is bad news for everybody. However, some clever marketers have come up with great ideas to keep the business in tough situations. It also helps the fact that the online market tends to be cheaper than the traditional market.

Less companies, but stronger

Another fact from all crisis is that the weaker companies will fail. In the UK, FlyBE and Laura Ashley have already succumbed, although they were in trouble before the crisis. Others are also hanging from a thread.

On the other hand, many companies will survive these uncertain times. Since there will be less competition and, hopefully, more savings and a bigger online market, our job will get a boost.

What do you think?

Well, now it is time for you. How do you see the future of digital marketing? How will it affect all of us? Do you agree or disagree with me? Why?

I would love to read your comments. Stay safe and healthy!


Photo by Drew Beamer on Unsplash

4 thoughts on “Digital Marketing After The Current Crisis”

  1. My question is if all goes online and digital, do we have the infrastructure to cope. Already in the uk supermarket online orders are difficult to fulfill with sites crashing and long delivery dates. The queues offline are very long and we should isolate not queue. These are difficult times. Without government bailouts this would be worse. Much worse. I see a big role that AI can be used to help predict consumer behaviour, identify challenges quickly, and most importantly work with scientists to help identify vaccines quicker.

    When and I hope if this all ends, we need to address these digital and hybrid challenges and be more prepared with solutions. My thoughts to everyone affected and the emergency workers in the front line. Thank you.

    • Thanks Ravinder for your comments. As far as I know, online supermarkets are not as profitable as their traditional counterpart. This is why Aldi does not offer an online option. Maybe they will also have to change…

  2. Thanks for a thought-provoking post, Pedro. A few thoughts:

    Shift 1: If employees on temporary WFH are productive, these arrangements may become permanent. Current consumer & B2B target audience segments may not serve folks for whom work & leisure are suddenly digitally merged.

    Shift 2: In the US, when a tsunami of displaced workers hit a flimsy safety net in 2008, many marketers simply shifted upscale to wealthier segments. This time the reaction may be different, but that’s not how I’d bet.

    Shift 3: Some must now buy online who haven’t shopped that way historically. How this affects physical shopping down the road depends on how long this goes on & which businesses survive it. I don’t think it will disappear, though. Going to stores is still a thing here. Price club shopping is practically a sport.


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