01 May Communicating in the Midst of a Crisis
We’re about halfway through Q2 with our country being affected by a virus that has completely shifted our daily lives. While it started with large event cancellations such as SxSW and Coachella, it evolved into more postponements and cities being shut down as we practice social distancing in order to #flattenthecurve. On top of events being cancelled, editors and writers are looking to understand how to provide content and stories to their readers when the news cycle is focused on how COVID-19 is affecting everyone and everything.
For conference organizers that rely on annual or small events to bring together industries’ biggest brands and executives or brands that activate in order to introduce or connect with consumers, Q2 arrives with us pivoting strategies to focus more online in order to continue to engage and create buzz during a time of only virtual interaction. Here are a few tips to ensure you’re staying engaged in an authentic way.
Go Live! Stay connected with your community by going live on Instagram or Facebook. New products being released? Create a short “how to” tutorial that can help your consumers understand the inspiration behind the launch. Host a Q & A with a brand fan or social influencer to talk what’s happening in the news cycle (doesn’t have to be #coronapocolypse!), but given your community is more than likely scrolling through their timelines with the extra time, don’t be afraid to engage them in real-time.
Check in via Email: It’s okay to keep the email marketing on but make sure the messaging has shifted to align with what your consumers may be thinking about or experiencing. And while they may be spending more time on their devices, don’t flood their inboxes with too much communications. Sending updates on weekly sales or promos, sharing new and existing content is one valuable way to inform your customers of how you’re informing them of what’s going on.
Keep Advertising: Whether tapping social influencers to collaborate for content or sharing your owned content, running ads via social and online is perfectly fine. Promote videos and stories from past events or announcements. We want to drive them to the site during a time when everyone is connected to their device.
As challenging as it may be, stay optimistic during this time. While the pandemic has the communications/events industry shaken as we try to understand how to best navigate given the state of uncertainty, connection during Corona is still important but best done online.