Struggling to market your business due to Brexit? Alison Humphries takes us through the key steps marketers should be taking to stay competitive.
THE BREXIT BULLETIN: TOP RECOMMENDATIONS FOR DIGITAL MARKETERS
The UK left the EU on 31st January 2020, having entered into a long period of negotiations which finally culminated in a trade agreement on 31st December 2020. From that point forward many export businesses have experienced disruptions to trade with their EU customers.
We previously published our Brexit Checklist to highlight the essential tasks businesses would need to complete to continue trading. To offer some support to Marketing teams currently grappling with the transition, we have investigated a few different areas businesses have faced challenges and outlined a few adaptations that could be made to the Digital Marketing Mix.
Has your business been faced with new obstacles following Brexit? Read on to learn how you can overcome some common Brexit challenges.
Marketing Communications Plan Updates
To ensure you are effectively communicating changes, build updates surrounding operational changes you may need to make due to Brexit into your Marketing Communications plan. Avoid any miscommunications by ensuring your customers are aware that there could be delays to delivery and that charges could potentially be levied upon receipt of their order such as import tax and customs duties.
Plan your communications channels carefully to reach your customers at every touch point and keep them regularly updated with any changes. Key considerations could include sending email updates to your EU customers to inform them timely of operational changes and training your customer facing staff on how to handle Brexit related queries. In addition, include a Brexit statement or updates to your delivery information on your website to ensure that prospective customers are informed, as well as reminding existing customers.
Running promotions could be a way to stay competitive during this time. While you navigate the transition, featuring offers in your promotional plan such as 5% off orders may help to incentivise consumers to buy from you rather than going to competitor sites while delivery costs may be higher, and service is not at its usual standard.
Heavy reductions or cuts to budgets are being made left, right and centre and while exporters battle with the challenges, they are presented with emanating from elongated delivery times and unforeseen costs charged to their customers upon receipt of their orders.
Reinvesting time and resources from marketing into solving these problems could seem like a sensible move, however, this provides competitors with an open opportunity to win sales that could have been yours if you appear inactive while they continue to invest. This could ultimately result in a loss of market share if your valued customers lose their touch points with you.
Sourcing International Digital Talent
Processes to source and employ international Digital Marketing talent will require adaptation moving forwards. Advertisement and head hunting for these roles will need to be carried out on an international level and consideration will need to go into plans for where your future recruits will be located.
The ways of working remotely that have been adopted widely around the globe could set the precedent for changing the way international Marketing teams work together. Building remote working teams with employees based in market offers the advantage of having real time market insights to increase the dynamism in which your Marketing strategy can be adapted to the changing requirements of your target market.
Brand Britain could start to lose its appeal as issues surrounding long delivery times and high shipping costs become more synonymous with ordering products exported from the UK. ‘Made in Britain’ may have been an integral and successful part of your creative messaging but, considering the current export challenges, it would be highly advisable to monitor performance of this messaging closely to act and execute an alternative communications plan, if performance starts to dip.
Reviewing and enhancing your delivery proposition could be key to competing with other British exports and possibly even local competitors. Researching the most popular delivery options in your target market and auditing your current options vs. competitors will help to determine any potential opportunities to increase convenience for your customers that may not be available on competitor sites, for example offering delivery to lockers for maximum convenience could be an excellent USP. Once implemented, ensure these changes are promoted clearly on site and are communicated to your existing customer base.
Equally critical is assessing and determining whether you have the top payment methods for each local market you target integrated into your e-commerce gateway. This will improve the service provided to your customers and could influence their decision to purchase. Featuring logos for the payment providers prominently on your website could help to lure prospects away from competitor sites, who may not be actively promoting the availability of a wide range of payment options.
Expansion into New Markets
Finally, new international trade agreements agreed could open up export opportunities that may not have previously been considered. It is highly recommendable to review potential demand in these markets for your products or services to assess scope for expansion. We offer market exploratory reports that can help to determine the validity of expanding into a new market.
Brexit is driving a requirement for constant evolution to Digital Marketing plans, keeping a close eye on the changes and acting on these will assist in future growth. If you’re looking for assistance in managing your international marketing strategy in a post-Brexit world, reach out to a member of our team.