Marketers are Resilient. 2020 is Showing us That.
I want to start off by saying I am in no way complaining about the things we’ve had to deal with so far in 2020. I am in no way saying that as marketers, our struggles are greater than anyone else affected.
2020 – what a year so far, huh?
In the middle of March, we suddenly had to change all of our messaging, pause paid media for many of our clients, go dark on social for others, rewrite blog posts and emails, pause campaigns…
We thought this would be over in about a month or two.
We moved many of our social posts to April, May, or June, thinking everything would be settled down and “normal” by then.
We’re still moving those posts.
We’ve had to completely shift our way of thinking; no longer can we show photos of people in groups. We can’t talk about gathering. We can’t show handshakes. We can’t talk about being in the office. Every client was affected in some way.
Things are still affected.
Then in June, we were awakened to #blackouttuesday. Our entire feeds were filled with black squares. We immediately paused paid media, moved social posts, delayed emails, shifted messaging. We didn’t want to be that brand that seemed tone deaf or that didn’t know what was going on.
Obviously many people get it, and if you don’t, I’m sure you’d understand – in marketing, we work ahead. We’re not drafting social posts in the moment; we’re scheduling them as far as a month out from the date they go out. We plan out campaigns and content months in advance. So no, we obviously weren’t looking at black squares on our feed and then deciding the right thing to do would be to post something about a client’s products or services. These posts were scheduled. But we knew we needed to act fast and move everything so we wouldn’t be that brand.
All of this just reminds me of how resilient our industry is.
We’re not essential workers, we’re not fighting to keep people alive, we’re marketers. But everything that happens in this world affects us. It affects us because good marketers don’t close their eyes and ears to what’s happening around them, even if it doesn’t directly affect clients’ industries or businesses. Good marketers know how to take an event, a movement, or a pandemic and find the best message to give to their audience (even if that’s no message at all for a few days). Good marketers are able to wake up thinking their day will look one way, but be able to turn on a dime and crank out new content, move or pause existing content, and quickly run through a list of everything going out for a client in order to ensure that the right message is going out.
It’s been a struggle. But this year has made me so grateful for the marketing community. For the people I work with who help and support each other and who want the best for our clients. For the people I work with who suggest going above and beyond for a client even if it means extra work and no extra pay, just because it’s what’s right. For the clients who take our advice to heart and work with us to get things approved and in market quickly, to truly take care of their audience.
I’m grateful to work in an industry where we don’t allow the rest of the world to just happen; we adapt, we grow, we shift, we stop, we move forward. We do what’s right for our audiences and we do what’s right for the world.
Marketing industry, 2020 is tough. But I’m thankful for you.