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Survey Finds How Marketers Are Responding to COVID-19

Marketers Respond Covid

The COVID-19 pandemic seemingly came out of nowhere, blindsiding business, sending employees across the country into sudden work-from-home scenarios, and companies hitting the brakes on the best-laid business plans. Consumer wallets snapped shut to anything but the essentials.How are marketers responding weeks into social distancing and the economic shutdown? 24 Seven surveyed 200 marketing executives on how they are managing marketing decisions, budgets, and hiring during the pandemic crisis. Here’s what’s happening:

Pausing and Pivoting Marketing Strategy

Ten percent of marketing leaders said that their company has cut back on all marketing efforts and spending. The remaining ninety-percent are taking a variety of approaches during this unusual time:

  • 15% are planning to handle or are already handling in-person initiatives as virtual ones

  • 14% are redirecting efforts & budgets to existing digital programs

  • 12% are redirecting efforts & budgets to brand message repositioning to be more crisis-appropriate

  • 10% have postponed marketing & sales initiatives that require in-person interaction

  • 9% are rethinking current products & services so they can offer them via e-commerce, digital, or virtual channels

  • 9% have wholly canceled all marketing & sales initiatives that require in-person interaction

One Quarter Adding to Teams

A bit over half of the marketing leaders surveyed reported that all plans to hire had been frozen at this time. But about one-quarter of respondents said that they are still adding to their teams, some with no change to their pre-pandemic plans, while others admit to scaling back:

  • 36% hiring for mission-critical, previously-open roles only

  • 36% hiring for all open roles

  • 9% hiring freelancers instead of full-time team members

  • 9% hiring part-time team members either instead of or in addition to full-time hires

  • 5% hiring for new roles as a result of the pandemic crisis

Where Are the Marketing Hires?

Marketers are adding talent in the following areas: Account Management, Customer Service, Digital Marketing, Sales, E-commerce, Customer Acquisition, and SEO/SEM. With companies needing to master the digital pivot many have reworked hiring plans with a focus on building digital teams. Business sectors that are trending in the media for hiring include Tech, Pharma, Online Education & Training, Grocery, Delivery Services, E-commerce, and Financial Services. As the management of the pandemic continues and companies activate plans to move their businesses forward, hopes are high that hiring will slowly ramp up as well. If you're not ready to commit to a full-time hire but need to make an addition to your team we recommend making a freelance hire