Benjamin Franklin currency with covid-19 mask over his face

Marketing during a crisis:

3 tips and 1 warning during COVID-19

What should businesses and marketers do differently in a crisis? Should you be marketing at all? If you are to market during a crisis, how should you go about it?

We’re all scrambling right now. Whether you are a sole practitioner or a national brand, everyone is trying to figure out how to strike a balance and maintain a good business stride during, and after, COVID-19. While we may find ourselves living in a totally different new world, there are a few marketing tips that are easy to remember and can help you get through.

3 marketing tips you should consider during a crisis:

1) Assess the situation and adapt your marketing message.
Before you start communicating offers or any other marketing messages, be sure to inform and announce any operational changes that may affect your services or the way you deliver them. Start with updating your website. After all, your website is your virtual headquarters. It should always be updated with the latest information at all times, especially during crises.

Once you’ve taken care of the basics, you’ll be ready to turn to marketing and sales.

Now, each crisis is different and may require a unique approach, and determining that approach means being sensitive to your customers’ frame of mind. What questions might they be asking, and how can you help provide answers? How might they be feeling, and how can you help address or respond to it? Try to internalize the moment; how are you feeling right now? What kind of solutions do you wish someone would offer you? Customers are people, just like you. Pause and take a look at the situation and their needs. In marketing it’s always all about their needs—in a crisis that’s even more important to remember.

To be clear, there’s nothing wrong with marketing and selling during a crisis, so long as you are offering sincere solutions to customers’ problems. Keep in mind that depending on your industry and the nature of your business and services, it may mean choosing between farming or harvesting—meaning planting relationship-building seeds, versus looking to make a sale today. Also, remember that in a crisis most customers become hyper-focused on short-term pains.

2) Communicate often, stay focused and leverage multiple channels.
Good, newsworthy content can and should be shared. Customers feel better when they are informed. However, if you didn’t have a crisis mitigation plan in place, stop and devise one quickly. This is not the moment to shoot from the hip—at least not with every communication piece.

In your plan, consider the channels you’ll use to communicate and how they all work together. Emails, newsletters, social media, direct mail, text messages. All can be appropriate depending on your individual circumstances and how your audience or customers prefer to stay informed, but they need to be orchestrated.

Through this process, you also need to plan your frequency. During a time of crisis, you may be reaching out to your audiences a little more than usual—even if it’s simply to let them know you’re there. To that end, make sure to understand the outcome you’re looking to drive with each piece or phase of communication. More than anything, your communication should be intentional. The last things customers want is to be inundated with messages that aren’t meaningful or helpful to them in the moment or, worse, that they feel tone-deaf given the circumstances. Lastly, try to create unique content; every brand will end up talking about the crisis in some fashion. Do your best at not becoming one more in the crowd.

3) Listen closely and pivot at the right time.
All crises do pass, so keep your ears to the ground and do your best at timing your marketing to how the situation is evolving. As we emerge from this crisis, people’s needs will change—and you can be ready to meet them.

In your plans, try to anticipate what those needs might be. Even though we are in unprecedented times and there’s so much that seems unclear, your business’s core offering—and core values—should remain intact. Be proactive about thinking through what you have to offer people on the other side of this experience.

Critical situations lead to pivoting moments where you can find new opportunities. If you stay tuned in to what’s happening in your industry and the lives of your customers, you’ll be ready to seize those opportunities when the time is right. A note of caution: creating your comeback when the crisis is over is likely too late. If possible, plan and create your marketing before the tide changes.

1 Marketing warning you shouldn’t forget:

During and after an economic downturn, marketing overall becomes spammy and desperate. Additionally, aggressive offers and the frequency of them start crowding our emails and social channels… especially at a time like this when many people are stuck at home and largely living their lives within digital spaces. So, don’t be a nuisance.

Do take action and be assertive, but be sure to stay focused on the long-term objective. You want to, financially speaking, survive these challenging moments, but do not tarnish your brand in the process. So, figure out the space you fill in your circle of influence, your strengths, weaknesses, and how to work through the challenges to find the opportunities.

Daisho Creative Strategies helps image-driven businesses create beautiful, bold brands through an immersive process and big-brand experience. Contact us if your brand or website feels stuck. Daisho is headquartered in Miami, Florida and focuses its work on branding, website design, website management and print design.

“Frank and the group at DAISHO are extremely professional and creative. Their work in developing our new brand and our social media initiatives have brought significant attention to our firm. We look forward in continuing to advance the firm with DAISHO's assistance.”


— Julie Salas —
March of Dimes

“Frank is a one stop shop when it comes to design, printing and web presence. He immediately engages you grasping the project quickly and he always goes the extra mile. He has a knack to inspire and make you and your Company shine! I have personally used Frank's talents on numerous projects and I will be back...over and over.”

— Vlademir Golik —
Keller Williams

“I collaborated with Frank closely when I worked at Med-Tek. Frank and his talented team at DAISHO did a great job delivering striking and high quality designs including logo, product packaging, corporate identify guide, marketing collateral, web design and development… the list goes on. Frank works really hard to ensure the delivery of all projects on time with uncompromising results. Frank is a person with candor. With Frank, we can surface, debate rapidly and acted upon ideas. He is also a humble person with a big heart; he helps and hosts small business networking events and volunteers with charity organizations. I am privileged to have known and worked with Frank.”

— Aileen Fan —
PR Professional

“I had the good fortune to have been able to work Frank on two different projects. Not only is he one of the truly creative people in this market, his is also strategic, smart and a pleasure to work with. He manages to find the right path to a solution for any creative challenge. Whether it is a major branding project or a simple brochure, Frank will not only get the job done, but get it done with superb results.”

— Alana Perez —
Florida Grand Opera

“Working with DAISHO makes my job easier. From inception to completion, I can always be confident that my project is on track, in terms of goals, deadline and budget. Their team of professionals also provides an invaluable marketing perspective, even to seemingly minor projects, that helps keep our branding and communication initiatives focused. I'm always impressed with their attention to detail, and their level of customer service. DAISHO is an excellent partner in helping me achieve my business goals.”

— Ana Poveda —
Communication Director
Westminster Christian School

“Frank Irias has been such a great addition to our March of Dimes - Signature Chefs committee, providing meaningful suggestions to constantly improve & promote our event to make it a smashing success. He's always lent us a helping hand with wonderful designs for the event, and even created & designed our new Loyalty Card. Frank also helps us with designing eye-popping ads & invitations for our organization. I am truly lucky to have had the chance to work with him, and we are very fortunate to have him stay on-board!”

— Angelica F. Ramcharran —
March of Dimes

“Frank is an incredibly creative designer who thinks outside of the box. He completely re-branded all of our materials and exceed our expectations. The final product is beautiful and clearly meets (and exceeds) all of our needs. He is a pleasure to work with and we continue to use his services for other projects. I highly recommend him, you will not be disappointed.”

— Cathie D’Arcy —
St. Stephen’s Day School

“Frank is an incredibly creative designer who thinks outside of the box. He completely re-branded all of our materials and exceed our expectations. The final product is beautiful and clearly meets (and exceeds) all of our needs. He is a pleasure to work with and we continue to use his services for other projects. I highly recommend him, you will not be disappointed.”

— Cathie D’Arcy —
St. Stephen’s Day School

“Frank is extremely creative and especially talented at branding an organization and presenting amazing ideas. He has the ability to provide an up to date look to a company (logo, web, collateral pieces) while still maintaining the company history and core values. His creative talent and his interest in understanding the company he is working for intimately is reflected in his outstanding work. I had the pleasure of working with Frank while I was the marketing director for a local credit union and I would hire him again without hesitation.”

— Christine Redmond —
Marketing Director
South Florida Federal Credit Union

"I just wanted to drop you a note of thanks for the great work you did on our K'Alma Website.  Your insight, expertise, patience and constant willingness to engage with us, despite the hour, made the entire process enjoyable, enlightening and a great experience from start to finish.  We are so pleased with the outcome of our work together that you will be our go to company for everything we do moving forward and will gladly give you glowing referrals if they are ever needed.  Looking forward to our next project together."

— Craig Carter —
Spa Concepts & Management

“Frank has consistently turned out excellent results for us across a broad range of our business lines. His firm has always delivered exemplary results for us. They have completed corporate identity packages, web design, graphic design, advertising layouts, brochures, trade show booth designs, and much more for all of our businesses, for more than five years. The entire team at DAISHO is excellent, they manage our needs of the usual quick turnaround times, at a reasonable cost, on all projects. When people ask me where we have our design work done, we refer them to DAISHO. And while you are reading this "glowing recommendation", I can assure you, Frank is not a relative, and he did not pay me to write this!”

— David Schwedel —
Executive Director
Coalview, Gables Energy, DAS Family Holdings,


“Frank is perfect balance between creative concept. market branding and flawless execution. Professional to work with and stays on track.”

— George Contorakes —
Commercial Photographer

“This team is made up of an amazing group of professionals that are passionate about what they do, always thinking outside of the box, extremely talented and creative, and most of all they deliver in excellence.”

— Isabel Gallego —
Urawk Energy Inc.

“I consider Frank the best marketing person I have met, and also a friend. From humble beginning to hard earned success, Frank stood by me personally and professionally. He helped us grow, and always offered honest advice.”

— Justin Beckham —
DeFabio Beckham Solis

“Frank is extremely creative! He is determined to provide the best service possible to his clients making him accommodating and professional. His enthusiasm is important and is what makes each job unique!”

— Karen Egozi —
Epilepsy Foundation

“Frank developed several integrated merchandising and print campaigns for our brand and helped evolve the look and feel our external communications that resulted in increased sales!”

— Kim Miller —
Pollo Tropical

“I worked with DAISHO Creative (led by Frank Irias and John Keepax) for over 10 years while I was with Royal Caribbean. They were more than dependable! There was nothing they would not do for Royal Caribbean as a partner. They took time to understand the brand and were able to deliver extremely well on a very wide variety of marketing projects. I would definitely recommend them to others in need of marketing support.”

— Michelle Yanda —
Marketing Manager
Royal Caribbean

“Frank has an incredible ability to find the hidden message within your company that your current and potential customers need to see. He is an extremely creative, detail and results oriented person that will set your company miles ahead of your competition. I highly recommend Frank and DAISHO Creative Strategies as your final stop for your marketing strategy needs.”

— Miguel A. Lopez —

“I’ve had the pleasure of personally working with Frank for about two years now through the annual (Miami) March of Dimes Signature Chefs & Wine Extravaganza event. Before meeting him, he was already involved with this event for several years. Frank is a dedicated committee member and one of the most disciplined and professional people I’ve ever known. He goes above and beyond to help us and really cares about the March of Dimes mission -- which is to improve the health of all babies, by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. I know without a doubt that I can count of Frank to help me in designing marketing materials for our event – he not only delivers on time, but he delivers top quality work as well.”

— Nanette Molina —
Marketing Manager
March of Dimes

“Frank and the group at DAISHO are extremely professional and creative. Their work in developing our new brand and our social media initiatives have brought significant attention to our firm. We look forward in continuing to advance the firm with DAISHO's assistance.”

— Ray Zomerfeld —
Vizcaino Zomerfeld

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