Digital Marketing [Resources] You Need During COVID-19 Lockdown
Are you looking for digital marketing resources because you or your small business has been impacted negatively by the global COVID-19 pandemic?
Have you been laid off, furloughed, shut down, and locked down with no end in sight?
In this article, you'll discover practical, actionable, digital marketing strategies and resources that you or small business owners can use to empower yourselves during this challenging COVID-19 crisis.
By implementing these reliable digital marketing tips effectively, your life will be transformed now and you will be equipped and ready for better days ahead.
Does that sound pretty good to you?
Let's get started.
All over the world, millions of people have already lost their jobs and many businesses are closed because of the COVID-19 crisis.
Still, the worst damage is yet to come.
The global coronavirus cases stand at 2,466,305 million people.
According to the International Labor Organization (ILO), the COVID-19 pandemic is taking a terrible toll on the world's economy.
You already knew that.
However, it goes on to say that the pandemic's full or partial lockdown measures are now affecting the livelihood of almost 2.7 billion people. That's more than 4 out of 5 workers in the global workforce of 3.3 billion.
Let's let that marinate, would we?
The report goes on to say that the deadly coronavirus has put health care systems under intense stress and delivered "unprecedented shocks to economies and labor markets."
Then, the ILO declared in its report on COVID-19, that "it is the worst global crisis since the Second World War."
"Workers and businesses are facing catastrophe, in both developed and developing economies," ILO Director-General, Guy Ryder said when they released the report.
With the COVID-19 pandemic affecting more than 4 out of 5 in the global workforce, you would agree that the crisis is deep and felt in almost every land and business sector.
Remote workers, essential workers, and small business owners are impacted differently and each group is facing down its unique challenges.
However, the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic like people not being able to go to work, eat at restaurants, and shop, have caused a behavioral shift.
And that truism is confirmed each time you hear the buzz words 'new normal'.
“During the chaos, there is also opportunity”.
― Sun-Tzu, A Arte da Guerra.
Let's look at the opportunity.
With your target audience confined to their homes and online, digital marketing may well be your best defense against the coronavirus.
Tune off and turn off the distressing and depressing news of this global pandemic for a minute and just imagine how big the opportunity is.
Most of the billions of people impacted globally by COVID-19 are glued to their digital devices. And if you're not engaging with them now, your competition is.
That means that there are plenty of opportunities in digital marketing for individuals and businesses.
Perhaps, you could acquire skills in digital marketing and become a freelancer in a digital marketing niche of your choice or you could even open up your own agency, working remotely.
Free Digital Marketing Courses During COVID-19
The ability to use social media to get people’s attention, build an engaged audience and provide valuable educational content is becoming essential to thrive in today’s fast-growing and highly competitive digital economy.
Whether you are looking for a better job, freelancing for other businesses, or building your own business you’re going to need social media marketing skills to build your personal brand and leverage social media to attract a bigger audience.
If you’re ready to start improving your social media marketing skills, the free online courses in this guide will help you learn faster without having to go back to school.
For you to understand why being an SEO consultant is a very lucrative career path, just think of this: Every day, people perform more than 2.2 million searches on Google alone. Not to mention the other search engines.
Therefore, for most brands, their business being found on the first page of Google search results page, can be a deciding factor of whether they succeed or fail.
So, what is SEO?
SEO is an acronym for Search Engine Optimization. It is the practice of increasing the quantity and quality of traffic to your website through organic search engine results.
An SEO consultant is an expert on search engine optimization and is paid by website owners to give them advice.
The advice centers on how to get higher organic rankings, insane website traffic, and ultimately more profits for their brands.
A professional SEO consultant or agency should have a lot of experience and expertise in at least, on-site SEO and off-site SEO.
At Moz Academy, you will learn:
- SEO essentials
- Backlink basics
- Keyword research
- Local SEO fundamentals and more.
If you want to brush up on your digital marketing skills, go to Moz and take their FREE online SEO course. It expires on May 31, 2020.
While still with Moz and SEO, let's talk seriously about this amazing SEO tool.
This is serious.
Link Explorer by Moz is another great SEO tool that Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) can use to learn a lot about their competition.
I didn't want to use the phrase 'spy on their competition'.
However, not only can you use this tool to find link-building opportunities, but you can also use it to find out where your brand is mentioned online.
Isn't that sweet?
All you have to do is to plug in the URL for the site that you want to explore. Then click the “search” button.
Try it here.
Ahrefs is a platform for backlinks and SEO analysis with an amazing database.
It is a toolset that anybody that is serious about blogging for business should be using.
Because this tool makes it ridiculously easy to audit your website, explore competitors, do keyword research, and backlinks, all on one platform.
It also helps you find shared quality content and the contacts of people who shared it.
It alerts you when somebody mentions your article or that of your competitor.
For serious bloggers, this tool is priceless.
The blogging course offered by Ahrefs normally costs $799 but is now temporarily free for a limited time.
Check it out here.
HubSpot Academy helps you boost your professional skills to the dominant level with free, online training.
HubSpot offers practical courses and comprehensive certifications.
They help you learn everything you need to know about the most sought-after business skills.
Start your training here.
If you have heard of SEO and are new to it, wouldn't you agree that learning SEO from Google makes sense?
Therefore, if you're just getting started with SEO, this starter guide will be your new best friend.
If you grab this Starter Guide and implement the points raised, you will be up and running in a fast and effective manner.
The Guide will also help you avoid the common mistakes that millions before you made.
Get your Guide here.
5. E-commerce SEO 101 Video Series (Shopify)
This course is not for somebody with a casual interest in SEO. It’s designed for online store owners who want to draw insane traffic to their website, improve their rankings and boost sales and profit.
There are seven free videos in the course:
- Why is Your Store Not on Google?
- How Does Google Rank Your Ecommerce Store?
- Keyword Research: Which Search Phrases Should You Rank For?
The videos are long enough to provide an inside look at the subject matter without boring you.
If you own an online store, you already know that the difference between success and failure can rest solely on your ability to generate organic traffic.
Since you want to improve your organic ranking, the Shopify video series is a good fit for you.
SEMrush Academy helps you sharpen your digital marketing ideas in your target areas such as SEO, PPC, content marketing, and social media.
It has more than 30 free courses that help you become an expert in your new skills.
You can learn a lot from this platform because it has one of the biggest diversity of courses.
And they are all free and priceless.
The icing on the cake is that you get a certificate when you pass its test after studying the course.
Termination date: Free forever. Sign up here.
For its value, Agorapulse is one of the best social media management apps favored by digital marketing experts.
And as a social media manager, using Agorapulse would help you learn all the details of the workings of the main social media channels.
These lessons will help you fill in any social media marketing gaps and reinforce what you already know with these actionable and tactical lessons on:
- Tracking social ROI
This lesson is worth almost $1000 but is FREE for a limited time. Learn more here.
If you want to market yourself, products, or services using videos, then YouTube is your channel. It is owned by Google and with over a billion users, is the second most visited website on the internet.
Even before COVID-19, consumers were increasingly spending more time watching tons of online videos.
Ready to create a new YouTube account? See how to do this here.
After you've created your YouTube channel, head over to YouTube Academy to learn all the fundamentals.
Then, after you've been on your YouTube niche for a while, it’s time to start thinking of your channel and your personality as a brand.
Learn about the secret power of brands from Futurelearn here.
Google Online Marketing Challenge
According to Google. "Online Marketing Challenge is a unique opportunity for students to get real-world experience creating and executing online marketing campaigns for real nonprofits using a $10,000 monthly budget of in-kind Google Ads advertising credit through the Google Ad Grants program.
This global academic program brings two worlds together, partnering students and nonprofits, to support digital skill development and drive positive change around the world".
Register free here.
Coursera is making a selection of their courses completely free for anyone, anywhere so it’s easier to keep learning.
It is true that many courses on their platform were already available for free without a certificate.
But the beauty of this promotion is that it enables you to access lectures and quizzes, and also earn a free certificate for the courses that offer them.
They’re planning to make this offer available through May 31, 2020. Learn more.
Google Analytics gives you the free tools you need to analyze data for your business in one place.
With the tools, you get a deeper understanding of your customers.
It helps you to track online advertising spending. Google Analytics also helps you to know how to set up conversion tracking goals.
As you track your online activities, you can readily see which social media platforms and content are generating the most leads and sales.
Google Analytics is very technical and not easy to master. But a basic knowledge of Google Analytics is necessary for anyone who manages websites or social media for businesses.
Here are the tools in Google Analytics:
1. Google Analytics For Beginners
2. Advanced Google Analytics
3. Google Analytics For Power Users
4. Getting Started With Google Analytics 360
5. Introduction To Data Studio
6. Google Tag Manager Fundamentals.
Make Your Digital Marketing Tasks Easier With These Other Tools
Here are other resources and tools that would boost your digital marketing.
If your business is affected by COVID-19, Google My Business helps you to provide the most accurate information to your customers.
Update your Google My Business information here.
This free tool could help you determine keyword search trends year to year. So you can compare your keywords before and after the COVID-19 outbreak.
Uber Suggest is offering more free features in its keyword research tool. This is great for marketers who need access to tools but are on a limited budget.
How Small Businesses Can Adapt Their Digital Marketing During COVID-19
Communities around the world are taking the necessary measures to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
Brands of all shapes and sizes are also exerting themselves to stay afloat.
Businesses are now struggling to ease the impact of the global health crisis by considering how it will affect supply chain access, product launches, the wellbeing of employees, and business continuity.
If you've not been active with your digital marketing, now is the time to double down on it.
First of all:
Update Your Google My Business Listing
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, Google is giving you a chance to update your listing.
Whether your business is closed temporarily, changing your hours of operation, or offering curbside pickup for your restaurant right now, you need to let your customers and prospects know.
Use Google Posts to inform your audience of reduced hours or gift card purchases.
Marking your business temporarily closed will not affect your search ranking, and Google will still display you in the search results.
Update your Google My Business profile for COVID-19 here.
Your E-commerce Brands Could Benefit From New Shopping Habits
Almost the global community is on lockdown and people are staying home. As people spend a lot of time at home, they get bored.
So, whether out of boredom, necessity, or both, we’ll likely see an uptick of people shopping from phones and laptops.
After COVID-19, these new habits may develop into substantial long-term gains for online retailers.
Not only online retailers, but also the digital and affiliate marketers that generate the new traffic.
COVID-19 is forcing the global community to change. Tons of people are learning how to shop online.
As they do, they are finding new ways to get what they need from the comfort and security of their homes.
Because of that, e-commerce is evolving.
Will your business evolve along with it?
Small Business Social Media Marketing
Use Social Media wisely and responsibly in how you engage with your customers.
While most of your audience is flooded with fearful messages and depressing statistics, stay positive.
That means focusing only on the facts and things that may help your clients get through this difficult time.
Above all, keep your audience engaged with your brand so that they can support your business during this difficult time and beyond.
Website and Online Presence
This is the time to evaluate your website and online presence.
Is your website user-friendly and device responsive? If your website is outdated, now is the time to update it.
Think about your messaging. How are your customers interacting with your brand now?
As it relates to your business, what keywords are your customers using?
Can you write blog articles that address their pain points? Do not neglect social media management.
Though this pandemic is affecting all of us, each of us determines how we react to it.
Hopefully, you look at this challenge as an opportunity.
If you’re willing to rethink your campaigns, figure out how to work with and around COVID-19, and make the most of a tricky situation, your business can emerge from this pandemic stronger than ever.
If you're looking for a remote digital marketing job, click here.
If you're a small business owner, let's talk about your social media management. Start your social media marketing here.
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