“This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That is how civilizations heal” – Toni Morrison 

The COVID-19 pandemic has turned the whole world upside down.

Despite all the negative aspects of this crisis, we can’t deny that COVID-19 has definitely brought us together and changed forever the way we look at things and respond to the unknown.

Fighting the pre-sets

One of the most important things I came to learn since the outbreak of Covid-19 is to resist the urge of “forcing things” and particularly increasing sales activity!

Since an early age, we, humans, are conditioned to think the more work we do, the harder we try, the more results we get. We always fear not doing enough, not performing as expected, disappointing! Hence, a natural response to a crisis is to try to do more to compensate for the slow flow of business!

Unfortunately, these “pre-set” recipes of success have been challenged by COVID 19. In this new landscape, doing more of the same things does not necessarily lead to the desired outcome.

 That is why it is very important for businesses to mark a pause, collect facts, analyze the situation and devise the best plan that recognizes the specifics of the “new normal” and prepares for the “Next Normal”.

New Normal

How do we adapt?

Our early readings and analysis of the fast-evolving COVID- 19 situation alongside the acceleration of unfortunate events that many businesses in our industry endured, made us reach a collegial decision to stop all forms of sales activity, particularly prospecting.

Our adaptation plan was articulated around the following:

·         Internally: How can we make the most out of the time made available to us during confinement?

·         Externally: How can we best support our clients throughout this crisis?

Making the most out of the confinement

The world around us is changing, new processes and tools are constantly being implemented and improved to ensure all the teams can work remotely in an efficient way to ensure business continuity.

This was the golden time for us to revamp and enrich our internal training and make it available online. We invested time and energy collecting, consolidating, and deepening all the material developed over the years. We then articulated an internal training plan, so all the teams benefit from this initiative.

For example, we created a comprehensive conceptual and practical content on Marketing Mix Modeling. It was a blend of all the internal documentation, white papers, and publications produced previously and enriched with new educational material to match the new trends in the measurement industry.

This initiative received great appreciation from our teams that were able to fine-tune their knowledge in various domains.

Offering the best support to clients

This is a time for empathy, not hard selling. Build for the Long-term”

This is not the time for chasing sales opportunity, it is the time for showing support and commitments to clients. During confinement, people were trying different methods to improve their knowledge and make the best use of the time made available to them, so they prepare for the post corona phase.

We were all overwhelmed by an avalanche of online courses and training covering various topics. Yet, there was no single online course specialized in Marketing Mix Modeling!

Our sales team decided to leverage the content and training created internally to offer a comprehensive Marketing Mix Modeling online training to our clients.

Our efforts led to the complete revamp of our existing Marketing Mix Modeling Online training platform (OTP).

The OTP was designed to take participants through an end-to-end MMM journey from data collection to data processing, modeling, optimization, and scenario simulation.

We offered all our clients a 3-month free subscription to the platform and we extended the offer to the prospects we had in our pipeline.

Our clients/prospects truly appreciated this initiative that demonstrated our commitment to supporting their businesses.

Basic RGB

The exchanges we had with our clients during the crisis, showed that many of them were interested in understanding the “post-corona phase”. We then decided to launch our MMM expert initiative to shed more light on this by finding out and sharing experts’ opinions on the subject.

The initiative consisted in interviewing top thinkers, leaders, and experts in the Marketing Mix Modeling industry, to know their speculations on what the future holds for the industry and get their honest diagnosis of the situation. These interviews were published on our website and LI page and useful tips were shared with our audience to help them prepare for the “Next Normal”.

This pandemic brought fundamental changes to the way we function and respond to changes. It has challenged every pre-set we had and is shaping a new way for businesses to be run and relationships to be managed. Most importantly, it reinforced the values of caring and sharing in our communities and redefined our priorities.

Adapting smartly to the “New Normal” through embracing novel approaches and different mindset will help us thrive in the “Next Normal”

Dr. Ramla Jarrar
Managing Director, MASS Analytics