News
News

Impact Field Marketing Group, France are set to overcome the Covid 19 business challenge.

16/06/2020

Businesses worldwide have had to face an unprecedented event; the Covid-19 Pandemic hit on all sectors of business, including that of field marketing.

Impact Field Marketing Group (IFMG), French partners of the EFMP, have tackled the enforced period of lockdown by making use of the period of restricted business activity in order to prepare for what was to follow. This is how they dealt, and continue to deal with the situation. 

1. Collaboration

IFMG subsidiaries in France and Belgium embarked on a process of collaboration which enabled them to accelerate the transformation of the group. To date in Belgium and France, they have set up 7 workshops: PGC;   go- to- market; legal pricing; post- Covid barrier tests; brand activation; winminute pro; and door to door offers (in Belgium). 

Actions have been implemented to best meet the expectations of both customers and employees.  They worked hard to activate an action plan for the commercial and communications aspects of the business as well as for the human resources side. It was necessary for IFMG to innovate and work differently in order to accelerate the performance of their teams  and to maintain links with  the latest developments in the field.

2. Commercial

 Aware that they were facing an unprecedented event, their teams mobilized to develop new offers and to create links with their customers through innovative solutions, which they did both in France and in Belgium.  This involved the creation of virtual classes for training; the establishment of new partnerships; and the introduction of home experiences for consumers.  "Thinking out of the box" became the ‘go to’ phrase, as they proceeded with the establishment of a  ‘safely back’ (business back to business) offer in Belgium.

The commercial teams in collaboration with the communication service teams have set up a robust commercial action plan with the creation of a temporary website, planactionbyimpact.fr. They have also instituted the use of  E Memo sheets dedicated to supporting brands, and to engaging in post- Covid business activity according to relevant expertise, such as; Drive, PGC, High Tech, B2B, and Bio. This initiative was also supported by means of follow-up emails and relayed by phone, where appropriate.

3.  Impact has reinvented itself

- There has been an acceleration of the group's digital transformation in both processes and tools.

- Due to the premises being closed during the confinement period, 100% of the employees practiced teleworking.

- For field staff, virtual training courses were set up. These virtual training courses were designed to recreate the link with team leaders. The training was supported by revisiting shopper journeys and by doing certified product training

- Adaptation of certain telesales missions was also implemented.

4. Communication

By adopting these measures during this period of difficulty, IFMG were able to innovate in terms of their business strategy, to support their employees as best as they possibly  could, and to maintain the  all-important  connection with  their customers;  and by so doing they were able to ensure that their business prospects remained viable going forward.

- A new communication strategy was implemented with the publication of an “Anti- Crisis Magazine”. This was distributed internally, offering advice, recommending best practices, and highlighting the development of solidarity initiatives with the promotion of local associations like Emmaüs,  J'aime mon bistrot,  and 1lettre1sourire.   The magazine also featured company news and challenges were made with the intention of engaging and motivating staff.

-IFMG also implemented a strong activation on social networks, including Linkedin, with an increase in the number of publications (8 per month on average with varied content).

-In terms of social responsibility, IFMG set up a partnership with the CHU of St Denis (Saint-Denis Hospital Center) making vehicles from its automobile fleet available to doctors and caregivers for use during the pandemic.

5.  Human resources:

The Human Resources Division implemented social and economic measures in order to best prepare for the resumption of face-to-face business activity.

- In order to limit the economic consequences of the Covid-19 epidemic on the activity of the IFMG group, the partial activity mechanism (partial unemployment) was implemented for a large part of the workforce until the end of June (between 70 and 90% were thus affected).

-As it happened, the employees returned to the premises from mid-May, which was the date that lockdown restrictions were lifted in France, and both the field and headquarters teams had to be equipped with sanitization kits (consisting of masks, hydro-alcoholic gel, visors, and gloves) for the occasion.

The economic effects of the pandemic could have spelt disaster for the IFMG group, but they chose to utilize the time during the lockdown restrictions imposed as a result of Covid 19 to innovate and to propose and implement various solutions.  They have re-visited certain business practices and have worked hard to create more digital experiences, and they have recreated the customer journey (at home and in store) by adapting to the safety measures and social distancing barrier procedures that have been imposed.

IFMG feel confident that by maintaining a positive attitude and by being innovative, while observing the necessary health and safety restrictions during these challenging times, they are well placed to resume business, not just ‘as before’, but even better than before.

It is their belief that great opportunities lie ahead…. 

© 2020 European Field Marketing Partners Coöperatief U.A.
VAT number: NL860658223B01