Businesses and industries have been massively affected as the economy has taken a downturn as a result of COVID-19. Supermarkets and local grocery stores have been left with empty shelves while restaurants remain closed. Although, some restaurants have operated a delivery or click and collect service to tread water. Hear are some social media management tips to help you get through this pandemic.
Following the constant media updates about the coronavirus is depressing. Agencies and freelancers are thinking will we survive this pandemic or will our businesses fold.
One thing is certain, this situation is not going to last forever. So the message is you don’t want to bring your business to a sudden halt. History has shown us businesses that have chosen a strategy of refocusing spending during a recession have performed better than businesses that made wholesale changes, according to studies that analysed recent recessions (CXL.com). These social media management tips are designed to keep your business relevant during these testing times.
Our communities need support, understanding, education, resources. Social media can provide just that and can be extremely powerful when done correctly.”
There’s no two ways about it, these are unprecedented times. When times are hard, it’s really difficult even for the best of bands to know what to say to its audience. Never mind how to adapt its social media strategy. Do you stick with your old strategy and carry on regardless? (Hint: no). Do you focus your attention to only COVID-19 related posts from now on? (Hint: probably not).
If we’re being completely honest it is impossible for us to answer these questions for you. However, we can provide you with a guide that will help you put together a strategy. One that strikes the right chords for your brand and audience. We’ll take you through the process offering tips, questions, and recommendations. This will help you generate a bespoke social media strategy that fits your and your audiences needs and situation.
Social Media is still important in a crisis Like COVID-19
Many marketers pulled back their spending out of fear and not knowing how the crisis would affect their business. Coincidentally, this was despite the fact users were engaging with social media at higher rates. However, depending on the nature of your business, if you operate in industries such as technology, telecom and consumer packaged goods (CPG). You could continue to spend to reach consumers whose daily activities shifted once they started spending more time at home.
Now if you operate outside of these industries that does not mean you can sit idle and twiddle your thumbs hoping for divine intervention. You can still build your brand and engage your customers. For instance, during this period of isolation, shielding and social distancing people have been turning their attention to different platforms. Platforms such as TikTok and Snapchat for entertainment and distraction. Now would be the perfect time to target users on these platforms to build relationships with new and existing customers. Take advanatge of these social media management tips now.
Audience is king
In order to truly understand your audience, you have to be empathetic. This is crucial during this period to really understand your audience. You may think you know your audience due to your time serving them. However, do you know their state of mind in the current climate? Probably not. How has your audience changed? You will need to conduct some research through influencers.
Find out if they’re now dealing with working from home. Are they trying to keep kids busy now that schools are closed? Are they trying to stay fit and healthy while in quarantine? What are their needs approaching the summer holidays? Have they cancelled their summer holidays? What will they most likely now be doing over the holiday period?
Once you have answered the above questions it is time to take a step back. Digest, analyse and understand this information. Ask yourself are there any new opportunities to share your product in different ways with a different audience? How can you adapt and change to meet the needs of your customers right now?
Now is the perfect opportunity to really show empathy to others and help out where you can. Now is the time to display sensitivity — and refrain from being too salesy or pushy — but it’s also a great opportunity for your brand to stand out during a difficult time. More so than ever before people are on social media whilst isolating, shielding or social distancing. They are constantly tuned in scanning for updates and to remain connected in a suddenly isolated world.
Also, use your business to contribute to area food banks or assist the elderly with their grocery shopping. And promote your good deeds with social media marketing to help build your brand.
This in-depth knowledge base of your customers will set the foundations for everything you do during COVID-19 and beyond. The relationships you build through effectively knowing and meeting customer needs will remain long after the crisis is gone. The empathy shown in understanding and delivering on your customers needs builds lasting loyalty.
You’re a business
We understand you are a business and your base goal is to make money in order to survive. We are not proposing you lose sight of that goal. Now may not be the right time to be focusing on your KPIs. Those will return to the top of your agenda soon enough. Achievement, success and progress will look completely different to what they used to.
Understandably, people are currently reluctant to buy. Therefore, engagement metrics like clicks, likes, shares, comments, etc. are better gauges right now.
Explore new platforms/approaches
Now is the time to explore Snapchat, TikTok or any other channel you thought may resonate with your audience. Some other things in our social media management tips you may want to try are:
- Experiment with video content
- engagement polls on Instagram and Facebook
- listen to comments on your post, competitors and influencers
- involve your customers with calls for user-generated content e.g. products in use
There is no time better than now to explore all these opportunities. Do not let the uncertainty get in the way of being a presence for your customers. You need to maintain that regular contact.
Maintain an online presence
I’m sure it will not have escaped your attention, but more and more people are online right now than travelling cars or by any other mode of travel. Search traffic has increased significantly over the past few months and will continue to climb as we remain in somewhat of a lock down. We’re all fixated to our PCs and mobile devices looking for updates within our community. We’re also looking for entertainment and other engaging ways to pass the time. Despite many being put on the furlough scheme, that includes shopping online. Be that for groceries, clothes, electronics or other items.
Anything online right now will be consumed more than ever before. This is not the time to be hidden online. You should be using search engine optimization (SEO) strategies to climb to the top of Google’s search engine results pages (SERPs) so your business can be easily found. This is not a time for a business to go into a shell and poke out your head every few days to see if the sun has come out.
Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Advertising
With the majority of individuals sat in front of their screens in the comfort of their homes. Now is the perfect opportunity for businesses to adopt PPC marketing to connect with their customers and getting ahead of their competitors. By the way, it’s also saving you money within your digital marketing budget. This is because, cost-per-clicks have decreased across all verticals. It is likely to continue to decrease in the coming weeks, reducing the money you will pay publishers for every ad click. That gives your business another opportunity to scoop up that lost market share from others scaling back during this time.
Opportunities for a Special Offer
During this uncertain time period, it is the ideal time to show support for your loyal customer base. Your support can be shown in the guise of special discounts that will keep your revenue flowing. Identify your product/service-market fit and curate an appealing special offer. During this period of unrest, your customers are looking at saving money by crawling the web for suitable offers. It’s a great way to engage with your customers and keep a steady stream of revenue that will keep your business ticking over. You can push out your special offers through pay-per-click (PPC) advertising and social media. Snapchat and TikTok seem to be blowing up in the current climate. You could look at exploring these platforms and running campaigns on these for new and existing customers.
Local SEO is now More Relevant
Due to the lock down and travel restrictions, in the rare times when we leave our homes, we’re more likely to look for nearby businesses for services and supplies. Therefore, it is imperative you make sure your business is using local SEO strategies to optimise your website for “near me” searches. Customers in your geo region need to be able to find you online with relative ease. If they can they are more likely to use your business ahead of your competitors. This allows your business to offer assistance in this critical period of time.
Gaining positive reviews as a result of a product or service provided during this pandemic is another way to boost your local SEO. Providing people with a product or service during such a stressful time will not only result in glowing tributes but build customer loyalty.
You should always push to get reviews submitted so they publish when GMB returns to normal. One way to boost your brand during a such a pandemic is to turn to a professional online reputation management company such as Rize Reviews to help you with your review responses. These social media management tips will help your business engage with your audience and build a loyal customer base. As soon as the world as we know it returns to normal the loyal following you have built up will reap rewards.