Learn how to effectively use social media during the COVID-19 pandemic. Building a community around your brand is crucial to your resilience. As the COVID-19 pandemic progresses, organizations are adjusting their operations and business models to address the crisis. It’s crucial that your company shift your strategy to accommodate a newly sheltered, anxious consumer base. Brands have an immense opportunity to step up as leaders during this troubled time. As more consumers take to social media for answers and entertainment, it’s more important than ever to have a well-established, active social media presence. Here’s how you can build your brand community and support your customers through social media.
It takes a village to get everyone to stay at home. The CDC, the WHO, the White House, and other authorities all recommend that people avoid leaving their homes, and when they do, that they stay at least six feet away from other people. These practices constitute social distancing. To help promote social distancing, many local and state leaders have issued shutdown orders for nonessential businesses.
Whether your business was subject to a shutdown or voluntarily shuttered to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, it’s important to communicate your closures to your social media followers. First, keep in mind that people will be searching to see if you’re still open and what your hours are. Second, this is a great opportunity to explain what you’re doing to help in this crisis. Create a post that shows you care about protecting your customers and employees. If it suits your brand, you can also share facts about the pandemic and what people can do to protect themselves.
Many people have been laid off, furloughed, or transitioned to remote work, all of which can be highly distressing — and being stuck at home makes it worse. Help lift your social media followers’ spirits by offering them a way to engage with your brand. Post a daily poll or question (not related to the pandemic), or ask your audience to provide user-generated content as part of a game or campaign. These strategies are highly effective at building a community around your brand, and they’re especially important during times of crisis.
You should also make it a point to engage regularly with your followers. If you’ve been neglecting the comments section of your Facebook page, now is the time to dive in and start responding to people. Make your audience feel heard and respected. By doing this, you can improve your brand’s reputation and encourage people to ask questions.
Social media already offers powerful tools for engaging with your audience, and many brands have already made livestreaming part of their strategy. If you haven’t yet, this is the time to start. Brick-and-mortar businesses especially should take advantage of Facebook Live and other livestreaming tools to offer high-value content to their audience. Look at how Michaels is hosting virtual crafting classes and Planet Fitness is offering free workouts videos—all for free.
These strategies are great ways to show your audience that you care about them for more than their capacity to patronize your business. By providing them with entertainment and education, you’re creating a community around your brand that will help you be more resilient down the line.
Above all else, show your appreciation for the people who care about your organization. Create a thank-you campaign to express your concern and compassion for your followers. People are feeling anxious about the future and distressed that their way of life has been interrupted. Hearing from brands they care about helps people feel a sense of security and familiarity.
When sending these messages, it’s important to be honest and authentic. Offering discounts or coupons can seem opportunistic, so be sure that any special deals you run would be helpful for your customers. For example, Ryan Reynolds’ company Mint Mobile offered unlimited data for all subscribers so that people could stay in touch with loved ones.
Now is the time to embrace the “social” aspect of social media. During these uncertain times, it’s crucial to maintain a connection with your audience. People appreciate hearing from organizations they care about. Focus your social media marketing strategy on making sure that your audience knows that you care about their safety and well-being. By putting this principle of inbound marketing into action, you can boost your brand’s resilience and help others through this crisis.
Need help with a content strategy and website that’s resilient in the face of Covid-19? At Dotlogics, we take a personalized approach to your success. Reach out to us to refine your brand and build your community.