The material was prepared by the communication agency wecom.agency.
How communications have changed during the quarantine period, where do marketing budgets go, and why it is important to respond quickly to media inquiries? Marketing and PR specialists of Central Asian companies answer all these questions.
Alisa Moskalenko, Marketing and Communications Manager of Sheraton Nur-Sultan Hotel, @alicetalks
We opened on March 16, a few days before the start of quarantine. Our entire promotion plan was based on events and on everything that is now prohibited.
During the quarantine period, we had a lot of time to think over a new strategy, and we decided to focus on digital promotion. We decided to launch Instagram pages not only for the hotel, as planned, but also separately for the Emilia restaurant and SPA.
We use advertisements from bloggers, place ourselves in online media such as restoran.kz, and wikicity.kz sites, and shoot a video about sanitary safety at the hotel. We had to cut and reshape the budget, and a lot went into digital, Instagram, and target advertising.
It is important to track trends not only in your own field, but also in others. Always think about what you can give useful to the client, and not just sell something.
Olzhas Shayakhmetov, marketing specialist at KazBeef Group
Due to the situation in the world, we have opened new niches. We have completely rebuilt the business. Previously, restaurants and hotels consumed 80% of our products. When all this was closed, we began an active study of the online store and access to other retail networks. Our product now has great potential, as people are now afraid to buy meat in the markets.
The main channel for us now is social networks. We are developing Instagram, launching targeted advertising, and connecting the display network. We are planning to work with bloggers. A lot of time is now being spent on content creation. We shoot photo and video recipes. Previously, our videos have always featured professional chefs in a professional kitchen with professional knives. Now we understand that this repels the consumer, we need something simple, since people cook at home.
Our budget has radically changed about those plans that we built at the end of last year because there was no online store in the plans.
We planned to launch online sales, but quarantine came, and we did not have time to work out this issue. Now we are making sales through Instagram the Entertainer.
For three months on our Instagram, we released content for children, entertained them, and published cartoons. We tried to entertain and provide interesting content for both parents and children.
Consumer demand is now weakened. it must be proved that children now need toys. Therefore, we have discounts on children's goods and toys.
We have greatly reduced the budget for the promotion, mainly how we use our channels developed before quarantine, where additional costs are not needed.
Asemgul Syzdykova, PR Specialist at METRO Cash & Carry
If we talk about food retail and our B2B clients, while communicating we focus on the topic of hygiene, sanitary standards, and the safety of staying indoors.
At the very beginning of the quarantine, we were the first to announce in the media that there is enough food in the warehouses and that no one will go hungry. We also covered the topic of corporate social responsibility, about how we supported those who are on the front lines.
Recently, we have been covering topics related to changes in the opening hours of shopping centers, including our supermarket.
During the quarantine period in PR, efficiency in providing the information is important, it is important to be aware of events, come up with your news feeds, and provide it to journalists. It is important to respond quickly to requests from colleagues, and then the media will always meet halfway.
WE communication agency is an agency with expertise in PR and digital promotion that has been working in the advertising and marketing market of Central Asia and Kazakhstan for over 17 years.