Marketing in times of Covid-19: How do we Adapt & Review KPIs by Micro Focus’ Sandra Skairjeh

By Sandra Skairjeh, Head of Marketing Emerging Markets & International Channel Marketing

CMOs are accustomed to keeping pace with the latest developments, but the COVID-19 pandemic is a continually evolving crisis, unlike any other that marketers have had to contend with, in recent memory. As a contemporary marketer dealing with this challenge, you need to focus on the ‘what, where and how’, while being open to surprises.

So, how exactly do you become proactive in the face of such an unprecedented event? Let’s begin by considering your KPIs. Typically, they enable you to quantify email subscribers, engagement rates, traffic etc. – helping to steer your marketing efforts. But are these legacy parameters a valid measure of your efficacy, during this pandemic?

In the midst of a crisis that looms large over everything, you need to identify your audience’s pain points and tailor your value proposition accordingly, without coming off as exploitative or insensitive. It’s important to acknowledge that the impact of the current crisis is non-uniform, across sectors and geographies. You need to be driven by specific metrics and customer preferences, rather than setting up generalized KPIs, which might obscure valuable insights, rather than underscoring them.

Don’t inundate yourself with multiple KPIs, where fewer variables might be more effective at decluttering trends.

For instance, you could opt to slow down on market tests, major strategic projects and short-term campaign KPIs, owing to the tumultuous market conditions. However, it is wise to continue monitoring critical campaigns, applying prelaunch data checks on media plans, and analyzing live results, to allow for turn-key optimization. Most importantly, you need to stay on top of your post-campaign analyses.

Building on these priorities, setting relevant KPIs alone will not suffice, without powerful analytics to analyze the recorded metrics, frequently and comparatively. For instance, depending on your organizational objectives, you could set up KPIs to measure social media and organic traffic. In such instances, attribution modeling could unlock indispensable advantages.

Such purpose oriented KPIs and meticulous analytics will empower you to respond appropriately to the ongoing disruption and make informed decisions, while transitioning from crisis mindset, to one that embraces a new normal.