If you do marketing that is of inherent value, and the rest will come. In fact, the NY-based marketing agency Renegade LLC lists “abundant generosity” as one of the key solutions to current brand challenges posed by COVID-19 in their B2B Demand Generation Guide, and nothing benefits a company’s brand reputation more than making things easier for customers rather than profiteering off of them. Many B2B businesses are shining through with freemium offers and solutions, and you can find a list of technologies helping small businesses by enabling remote work throughout this period on the Open for Business Hub.
Businesses are currently looking for short-term, low-cost solutions to common problems, so you’ll want to ensure that your team is problem-solving with customer’s needs in mind. It’s time to put together a modified version of your product or service, something recession-specific and low barrier to entry that you can get to market in four weeks or less.
In order to get a working product or service to market within such a short time frame, you’ll need to pull together a cross-disciplined SWAT team. That’s exactly what Kathie Johnson, CMO of Talkdesk, a cloud-based contact center solution, did. As she explains in her recent Renegade Thinkers Unite interview: “We pulled in sales ops, implementation, customer success, product, and marketing, and put a package together that we knew A: could help people in this time of need and B: that we could deliver successfully.”
Within 36 hours, they launched their first offer, Talkdesk for Business Continuity, exactly one week before the term “business continuity” began trending on Google. To get a product to market with this level of agility, Kathie needed to redeploy event and field marketing people whose roles had suddenly become obsolete: “I spent time working through each individual on the team and now we have a major business continuity program with individual owners for each stream within that.”
How can you foster a culture where employees are able to come together a develop a new product or service quickly and effectively? By doing good for your employees. Once a year, ParkMobile hosts an Innovation Week (I/O Week for short) for their employees, where they can team up and work on ideas they’ve had for the company outside of their day-to-day responsibilities. In an interview with CMO Jeff Perkins this January, he said that, for this year’s I/O Week their big focus was on tangible things that they could do in the short-term and could be executed in market: “Hopefully,” he explained, “with some of that direction this time around, we’ll see some ideas that we can take right out of Innovation Week and then put into practice in the business.”
Due to ParkMobile’s culture of experimentation and focus on delighting customers, they were well prepared to work together and act quickly, developing a new offer on their parking app in just a few days. While dedicating an entire week to internal innovation may be beyond your depth right now, consider just one “Innovation Day”—it’ll get the creative juices flowing and connect your employees like never before.