The pandemic has affected all types of businesses, from oil companies to small coffee shops around the corner of your house. Right now, approaches to branding, PR, marketing, and buying habits are changing. They become more rational and conscious. In this article, we decided to figure out how the coronavirus pandemic is changing social media marketing, and what you can do about it.
Social Media Marketing in the Context of the Coronavirus
Almost simultaneously, the whole world found itself in social isolation and total uncertainty about tomorrow. It is logical that the consumption of online content immediately increased rapidly. As for the time spent on social networks, this figure has increased by 21% globally, according to Statista.
However, at the moment, this was one of the few good news. The solvency of the population also sank drastically – the Americans have already lost 10 million jobs, and there is a prediction that this figure could reach almost 50.
What does this mean for social media marketing? This means that you should first, look at things soberly. Now people cannot afford to buy as much as they bought before. And secondly, now you have time to think, revise your strategies, get closer to your customers, and develop anti-crisis marketing plans with your customers’ expectations in mind.
And here is what you need to take into account for social media marketing during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Talk With Instead of Talking to
Earlier, brands talked to subscribers, but there are different rules for marketing in a social media crisis. The focus of buyers has shifted to essential goods, clear budget planning, careful and deliberate purchases. However, this does not mean that companies need to remain silent until the situation is completely stabilized.
Previously, brands sold – and talked TO subscribers on social networks. In reality of the pandemics, brands practically do not sell – and talk WITH them. Here is the key difference between social media handle in familiar and crisis conditions.
Time to Build Trust
Earlier, building trust was the next task after increasing sales. Now is the time to start strengthening relationships and telling exciting stories. And companies got more free time to create “trusted content”, and users, respectively, more time to consume it.
Now it’s a great opportunity to talk more about yourself, share your values, show the other side of the company’s work – in general, do all that for which you did not have time before the crisis.
For example, there is an interesting marketing campaign from Ukraine International Airlines. Every day they introduce subscribers to their pilots, technicians, and other specialists who make the sky safe. And they will continue to do this when it is all over.
More Data Collection Options
Even if a large number of businesses are paused in reality, this does not mean that you need to do the same in online space and in social networks. Moreover, the latter can be a great place to collect data about your users. This information can be the basis for your new marketing and business strategies.
For example, Aviasales regularly polls its subscribers on Instagram, being interested in their mood, opinion, and plans for the future. The company asks a direct question about where users plan to fly after the end of the lockdown, and it is obvious that this information will be used for the anti-crisis business strategy.
By the way, this is a good social media crisis management strategy. You can do the same and engage the audience. Yes, this is not classical marketing in its purest form – for some companies, for example, for the tourism industry, marketing as such does not make sense. But it always makes sense to work with users and collect insights while we all have nowhere to rush.
Influencer marketing works because people trust people. In times of crisis, influencer marketing is changing as well. And by the way, this is a good chance for a business that was created already in a pandemic.
The thing is that users, as always, are waiting for advice from the influencer, they want to hear words of support, feel for a foothold to stabilize their internal state, and find ways to solve their problems. If your business solves a problem that is relevant for many people in a state of lockdown, influencer marketing in social media can be a good solution.
And by the way, here is an interesting observation from Business Insider regarding social media issues. In a pandemic, fitness influencers became the most influential – even those who were previously considered small and medium-sized players. Think about this opportunity if your product or service can be connected with sports and a healthy lifestyle at least minimally.
Massive Pandemic Discounts
“Discounts only until the end of quarantine” have already become a recognizable marketing hook, and on social networks too. Traditionally, users practically do not respond to the word “discount” unless it is a discount from the brand with which they are already familiar and to the product that they really want.
But as we said at the beginning of the article, a pandemic is changing consumer habits. For businesses, quarantine discounts are an opportunity to stay afloat and at least not to lose profits. For buyers (who have kept their place of work and earnings) this is an opportunity to make a profitable transaction. This is true for clothes, shoes, household appliances, and gadgets in the middle price segment.
Users Need Quality and Reliable Content Like Never Before
Now we are witnessing a completely unprecedented case when the entire information field is filled with one single topic – the coronavirus pandemic. This is fertile ground for fake news, designed to increase the platform’s ratings and attract maximum attention from the community.
In this uncertain time, all Internet users across the globe are in dire need of quality, accurate, timely, and verified information, in addition to marketing approaches from brands. You can give them this and contribute to the development of your relationships and trust. By the way, you can choose reliable authors who can do this for you on the Best Writers Online writing service reviews website.
Our life will no longer be the same – it is already obvious even to the most inveterate skeptics. However, social networks will not disappear, and brands will have to adapt to changing conditions and learn to solve new problems better and faster than competitors. There is high hope that coronavirus will make our attitude to consumption, production, and marketing more ethical, conscious, and environmentally friendly.
Mary Byrd is a freelance writer with a combination of analytical mind and creativity. Marie is currently working in the company Best Writers Online and does everything to climb the career ladder of the blog. Marie is one of the best specialists in her field, who is always looking for new ways to create interesting content.