AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

One-Minute MarketerThe Most Important Marketing Thing to Remember in a COVID Crisis

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The Most Important Marketing Thing to Remember in a COVID Crisis

This will be a very simple, blog post.

The most important marketing thing to remember in a COVID crisis is your audience. By the way, all our audiences have changed. They have not changed in demographics, they have changed in psychographics. We all have changed. Human Crowd Forming A Target Symbol: Target Market Concept

It’s been hard on everyone and especially your customers, donors, stakeholders, patients, potential students and friends. Your target audience, at a minimum, is uneasy and unsettled. Some are so uncomfortable with their current state, they are angry. Most are just worried and dealing with all levels of anxiety.

  • They want information, not hyperbole
  • They don’t want fake compassion
  • They want ideas
  • They need confidence

The best way to be relevant to your new-normal audience is to read all your marketing out loud. If you’re too embarrassed, then there is something wrong with your copy. Read out loud all your messaging, letters, ads, sales sheets, speeches, blog posts and posters. It is best to read out loud to a group of people (on a Zoom meeting, of course) similar to your audience. Read to people who will be honest.

We’re all embracing the unknown. Yet focusing on your audience’s current condition will help your copy connect in a relevant way.


Written by:

Mark wrote his first direct-mail fundraising letter in 1981 for the University of Iowa Center for Advancement. The effort raised a few million dollars in undiscovered wills and legacy gifts. From that day forward Mark discovered a love of the big idea that moves the needle. After 12 years at KWWL, Mark became a business owner as a co-founder of ME&V — rebranded as AMPERAGE in 2015. After 25 years of leading creative teams in video production, graphic design, PR, writing and web development, Mark transitioned out of ownership in 2021. Today he serves in an employee role as special projects consultant. He is creatively ambidextrous — son of an artist and engineer — and famous for distilling complex ideas down to a few words and a few visuals. Mark is a writer. When he found that many nonprofits struggled with complex branding puzzles, he wrote the book, “NonProfit-NonMarketing .” He also wrote a novel called “Reenactment.” Mark is an active blogger OneMinuteMarketer® with nearly 1,000 readers each week on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. One of his most popular YouTube videos is on “How to Look Good on Zoom.” One of Mark’s fondest business memories was being named to INC 500 two times and attending the INC 500 conference with other winners. Mark is considered by some a Civil War expert (and that explains his novel). Mark also served as an adjunct professor in the business and in the communications departments at Wartburg College. Mark is a graduate of the University of Iowa and is currently vice president of the University of Iowa Journalism and Mass Communications Advisory Board. Mark is married to state Sen. Liz Mathis, and the two love to travel, even when it means being trapped by a volcano in the Czech Republic for three weeks.