How Businesses Can Effectively Use Social Media During Covid-19
Social Media Tips To Positively Adapt To Unprecedented Times
The pandemic has completely overturned the business world as we know it. In the several last months, companies have had to adapt new strategies in order the stay competitive, one of which is increasing their online presence. It’s not an easy feat, so we’re offering a few social media tips for marketers to use to their advantage during these unprecedented times.
1. Grant FREE Shipping & Returns, As Well As Extended Return Policies
Not everyone was an online shopper before the pandemic, but many suddenly had to change their buying habits when brick-and-mortar stores closed. Some will retain these habits even as stores reopen, and offering free deliveries is a great way to attract non-frequent online shoppers who aren’t used to the idea of paying for shipping. Consequently, an extended return policy makes customers feel safer about potential delays and unpredictable changes we may face.
2. Make Sure Your New + Recent Posts/Ads Are In Line With The Current Situation
Businesses have a duty follow government protocol, and the prevailing advisory is to adhere strictly to social distancing rules. Don’t post anything that may be interpreted as promoting large gatherings (i.e. images of friends having a party, hugging and shaking hands, eating inside a restaurant), and delete any recent ones that do. Even as regulations begin to relax, it’s important to show that you remain dedicated to stopping the spread. Brand image aside, you never know who is following your lead; images like that can subconsciously – or consciously – tell customers that it’s safe to go out again.
3. Make Strategic Promotions Of Your Product And/Or Service Offerings
Furniture companies like IKEA have changed their messaging to target the increasing amount of people who are now working from home, displaying office chairs, desks, and designs that can make the stay-at-home experience more enjoyable. Indigo has been offering a bigger puzzle selection for bored families looking for activities to do together. Whatever your product or service may be, shifting the narrative can increase the attractiveness of your offering.
4. Transparency Is Key
Nothing is more frustrating to customers than not knowing how you’re dealing with this situation. Every company is doing different things; no one really knows the answer yet, so it would be unwise to leave customers in the dark. An example of badly handled PR is the case at Mile, a restaurant and bar where an outbreak emerged among its patrons. Instead of immediately notifying their customers, they only sent out an official message after public health authorities divulged the information. The marketing team then began to delete Facebook comments from angry customers, causing intense backlash. If there is an outbreak or even a single case inside your company, whether it’s a physical store-front or an online business, make sure your customers hear it from you first, and that your protocol moving forward is clear.
These are challenging times with radical changes to consumer behaviours and needs. Many businesses are already suffering, but those that show sensitivity and a united front in the fight against the virus may come out of this with an even stronger brand image and brand loyalty.