Digital Marketing COVID-19 FAQ

We’ve recommended that brands run a sale during this time—not only to move product, but also to make it easier for consumers who are tight on finances to purchase products. Even if you’re a luxury brand who doesn’t typically run sales, you should at least consider it.

We’ve seen mixed results from clients who have offered discounts. One beauty client offered 15% off, and their sales have been high. But a higher-end fashion client ran their largest discount ever, and could barely move product.

At the end of the day, you have to determine whether a discount will temporarily boost sales, or if it won’t make a large enough impact to make it worth it.

If you can afford to keep advertising, you’ll likely notice that cost-per-reach and cost-per-click have gone down. Many brands can’t afford to advertise or paused their ads in a panic, so you can take advantage of the low cost and high engagement that ads are seeing.

Because people are spending more time on social media, social ads are a great investment at this time. Just make sure your ads are sensitive and timely.

Many brands are donating a percentage of all purchases to nonprofits, such as Feeding America. Others are donating masks to doctors, or donating their products to healthcare workers on the front lines.

Be creative, but make sure you stay within the recommended guidelines.

Many brands want to stop the spread of misinformation, but in the process end up confusing their customers. We typically recommend that brands link to the CDC website so customers get the most up-to-date information, and steer clear of offering any kind of medical advice.

That being said, your brand can certainly offer tips for working from home, cooking consistently, and working out at home—whatever works best with your brand.

Transparency is key here. We recommend sending out an email or social media update as soon as you feel comfortable, and creating a page on your website to clearly share updates with your customers.

You can update your customers on how you’re protecting your employees, if you have delayed shipping dates, and steps you’ve taken to preserve your business. (Organizations who haven’t been completely transparent or don’t offer paid sick leave have seen backlash.)

Small businesses are banding together like never before! Create a network of like-minded businesses who you can partner with.

Send a weekly newsletter to your network, listing local businesses and how best to support them (ordering takeout, buying gift cards, etc.). Encourage other businesses to do the same, and ideally include you on that list.

COVID-19 Digital Marketing Stats at a Glance

Updated May 4, 2020

Updated April 27, 2020

Updated April 20, 2020

  • Overall average ROAS +35.19% WoW (5.88)
  • Google CPC -21.17% WoW (1.69)
  • FB Link CPC -8.47% WoW (2.12)
  • FB cost-per-reach (prospecting) -14.39% WoW (14.52)
  • None of our brands saw a lift between April 14–16, when stimulus checks were deposited in 

Updated April 15, 2020

  • TikTok has exploded in popularity during this quarantine.
    • It’s estimated that their user base has doubled during this pandemic, and that people are spending 80 minutes a day on the app.
  • Facebook announced today that they are banning ads that include “face mask” as well as “hand sanitizer, medical face masks and homemade/fashion masks that resemble medical masks, surface disinfectant wipes, and COVID-19 test kits.”
    • From Facebook directly: “Ads, commerce, and organic listings that promote the sale of homemade, cloth, fashion, or any masks that resemble medical masks are included in the temporary ban, regardless of whether the ad or landing page includes medical context.”
    • Looks like “skincare face masks” for the beauty industry will be okay, but even having the term “face mask” in the ad could be a trigger for disapproval, so be careful with language.

Updated April 14, 2020

  • Overall average ROAS +22.64% WoW (3.81)
  • Google CPC +1.10% WoW (2.04)
  • FB Link CPC +1.39% WoW (2.30)
  • FB cost-per-reach (prospecting) +11.16% WoW (12.43)

Updated April 9, 2020

  • Social engagement and growth for March were higher than February.
  • Luxury brands are taking the biggest hit, as individuals are cutting out unnecessary high-end purchases.

Updated April 5, 2020

  • FB Link CPC +0.48% WoW (2.26)
  • Google CPC +5.24% WoW (2.07)
  • Overall ROAS +10.12% WoW (2.95)
  • Overall cost-per-reach -31% since the beginning of March (11.04 vs 14.47)

Recent Wins during COVID-19

Updated April 22, 2020

  • Online beauty consultation sign-ups have increased for one brand who has never done them before now!
  • Grande Cosmetics has now raised over $100,000 for Feeding America! Their new goal is $200,000.
  • “Self-care” audiences have proved successful for some skincare brands.

Updated April 15, 2020

  • Beauty continues to crush—the industry isn’t just doing well, it’s flourishing.
    • One skincare brand ran a friends and family sale a few weeks ago. Usually after a big promotion, sales drastically drop off for a little. This year, there was a small drop-off, but they’ve since had sales days similar to those when the promotion was running.
  • One beauty brand we work with has seen Instagram cost -per-followers at an all-time low—$1.68 versus the usual $3 during Q1. The same has been true for other beauty brands we work with.

Updated April 14, 2020

  • A skincare brand’s had the best friends and family sale in the history of the company!

Updated April 9, 2020

  • A skincare brand’s friends and family sale did extremely well this past week. Looking year over year:
    • Revenue is up 300%
    • eComm conversion rate is up 209% 
    • Transactions are up 364%
    • Revenue from new visitors are is up 492%
    • 1.45 Prospecting ROAS on Facebook
    • 6.33 Retargeting ROAS on Facebook
  • Another skincare brand launched a new product that is returning at a 2.8 ROAS. This same brand’s sales have increased 280% and ROAS has increased YoY 145% for the last 30 days.

Updated April 5, 2020

  • Grande Cosmetics raised over $50,000 for Feeding America by donating 15% of all purchases to the nonprofit. They’ve now doubled their goal to raise a total of $100,000!

Recent Losses during COVID-19

Updated April 20, 2020

  • None of our brands, regardless of industry, saw huge lifts between April 14–16, when stimulus checks hit many Americans’ direct deposits.
  • While Instagram follower growth is holding steady for two beauty brands, engagement rate for organic posts is down.

Updated April 15, 2020

  • While some industries (e.g., beauty) have seen increased engagement on social, other industries such as home improvement have seen engagement decrease. They’ve altered their content in light of COVID-19, but that new content has resulted in a drop in engagement.
  • One beauty brand offered an online sale at a popular beauty retailer and didn’t seen an uptick in sales like they usually would. CTR was down for these ads as well, which is unusual.

Updated April 14, 2020

  • Luxury businesses are still suffering, as consumers cut out unnecessary high-end expenses.


We’ve consistently noted that beauty sales are doing well, or at the very least maintaining, because people are willing to pay for self-care during this time. Because most people are social distancing at home, they have more time on their hands, and are willing to dedicate that spare time to themselves.

Check out our full blog post on The State of the Beauty Industry during COVID-19.


  • Offer money-saving bundles
    • One of our clients is offering their newly-launched product line in bundles that focus on self-care at home. Their spa-grade products will transform your at-home spa experience, and they’re offering them at a discount since their spas are closed!
    • This not only helps your customer continue their skincare regiment, but also builds trust.
  • Don’t delay product launches
    • In this time of uncertainty, you might be hesitant to launch a new product.
    • If you’ve spent time cultivating and optimizing audiences, those will likely perform just as well as they always have.
  • Don’t profiteer off the situation
    • One of our skincare brands has employed a strategy that allows them to share their efforts to fight COVID-19 but also not profit off those efforts. They’ve decided to steer clear of copy that focuses on staying at home in their paid social, but instead save that kind of information for their organic social
    • This strategy has worked well for them and helped their brand maintain a good relationship with its customers. In fact, when we retarget organic social engagers, those ads are returning at ~6!
    • It’s not always in poor taste to market your product to people who are stuck at home, if your product will really reach someone who is looking for it. (Think standing desk for those newly working from home, workout bands for people exercising in their homes, etc.)
  • Offer online consultations
    • If your brand typically does in-person consultations, consider transitioning your consultations to video instead. You’ll still be able to keep up with clients and help them get the products they need.
  • Promote self-care
    • Since most people are staying at home, focus your copy on self-care, working from home, or maintaining your skincare routine at home.


The health, fitness, and wellness spaces have seen a surge of popularity in the past month, as individuals look to maintain their physical health at home. At-home workouts on IGTV or YouTube are becoming more popular, as is home gym equipment such as resistance bands and yoga mats. And, since more people are cooking at home, cooking recipes and videos are increasing in popularity.


  • Rely on your tried-and-true audiences
    • You might think that branching out into a new audience at this time will give you opportunities to prospect new customers who might be searching for your product as they adjust to being at home. But that might not always be the case!
    • Your tried-and-true audiences will still likely work well. Facebook has already optimized those audiences, so they will likely continue to perform. If those are working well, you might consider sticking to those rather than switching your entire ad structure for new audiences.
  • Offer free content
    • Many people are turning to at-home workouts during their quarantine to maintain their fitness level and combat lethargy while working from home.
    • Share healthy recipes (that may or may not use your product) using common pantry ingredients that people likely already have.

Home Improvement

One of our clients created an entirely new content calendar that is specifically created for the COVID-19 situation. They’ve created taglines to accommodate the message and relatable topics for everyone staying inside. They’re totally deviating from their usual content and are using this opportunity to really connect with and speak to their audience.


  • Make the most of this downtime
    • As shelter-in-place orders have prevented many construction projects from continuing, now is a time to take a step back and look at ways to improve your business.
    • You might choose to redo your website, as one of our renovation clients is choosing to do, since their operations are completely shut down. Since organic traffic to their site is down 50% (30 days PoP), it’s a great time to work out all the kinks that come with launching a new site.
    • Or, you might focus all of your efforts on creating relevant content, like another one of our clients in this sector. They totally scrapped their content plan and created 8 weeks of new content that is relevant to the current situation.
  • Schedule consultations via video
    • Don’t let your leads slip through the cracks. If you can, video chat with leads to consult about their latest project. Although you might not be able to start or complete a project currently, you can still take the necessary steps to get the project rolling.
  • Q&A with owners
    • CEOs whose schedules were once packed full with meetings and consultations might find themselves with more free time than they’re used to. Capitalize on this time and do a Q&A with them!
    • You can ask them questions about how they’re adjusting to working from home, what their schedule is like, and how their business strategy is changing during this time.
  • Alter posts/ads to show only finished products
    • Posting an in-progress construction shot—even if it’s not current—can come across as disingenuous in a time when people are stuck at home and construction workers are unable to finish their jobs. Instead, post finished shots of interiors or projects as inspiration for people to DIY.