Adapting your Business Strategy to Digital Marketing in a Time of Crisis

A few weeks ago, we were happily working away none the wiser of what was to come. Fast forward to today, and we are working from home to ensure our safety against COVID-19 outbreaks. Not only is it affecting our health but our businesses too. This blog will focus on how you can use social media marketing to sell your business from home.

Social media isn’t the only digital marketing tool you can use to boost your business, so we have created a mini blog series that will cover all aspects of digital marketing. From video conferencing to emailer, social media to websites, each one will tell you how to make the most of digital marketing.

Social media platforms are being used as an instant news source, helping the Government, hospitals, and health care organisations to promote their message to a targeted audience, immediately. We’re also seeing personal benefits, as social media becomes an irreplaceable tool for easing our isolation and connecting in new ways.

On top of the devastating health crisis, businesses face uncertain times. 41% of marketers in the UK say they have delayed or are reviewing strategic initiatives, such as digital transformation or restructuring mainly as a result of not having employees with the appropriate level of digital skills.

Here is where we would love to help you. We have come up with three steps you take that will help you adjust your business and communications strategies. Ensuring you stay connected to your clients and demonstrate leadership in the chaotic months ahead.

  • Use social media to encourage social connection, increase the use of Facebook groups, social videos and 1:1 messaging.
  • Use social media platforms to decrease business disruption. Experiment by increasing your digital presence and customer engagement.
  • Use this lesson of the present crisis to build for the future, especially the rapid growth of people working remotely, online service delivery, and increased use of real-time analytics.

Stay Connected

Use social media as a tool to connect with your employees/clients. As humans, we are naturally social animals, and crises like these threaten to break those critical connections. The need for 1:1 connection has surged, as consumers are turning to each other with voice calling and 1:1 messaging. In a press call about Facebook’s response to the virus, Mark Zuckerburg reported that WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger usage has more than doubled since the start of the crisis.

Social media can be a useful tool for businesses at any time, but since the COVID-19 crisis, we have all been forced to take on a more digital strategy. Social media allows you to engage with your audience, post new content as soon as it happens, along with boosting your website traffic. We can help you decide the best approach to social media marketing for your business.

Two ways to build connections and engagement in a time of crisis – you can either do good or make people feel good. You would have hopefully seen a sense of community online in your area lately where everyone is offering to help where they can. But also, we are seeing brands such as TikTok flourishing where people are posting content to connect with others and make people feel good. There was a viral TikTok where a man in China was performing live DJ sets to everyone.

Decrease Business Disruption

While digital tools are helping to keep retail and service businesses in touch with their customers, people still want human interaction. This is where Facebook Stories, Instagram Live and IGTV can come into their own.

Many small businesses, especially service industries such as fitness centres and beauty salons, have turned completely to social-only service.

Sophie Pavitt is a New York-based facialist, and when the pandemic hit, she told Glossy, she saw an instant spike in in-office cancellations. She started offering live guided facial tutorials on her Instagram channel. The first experiment, on Instagram Live on March 15, saw more than 10% of her followers tune in. She booked 36 virtual consultations as a result. Now she’s doing tutorials on Instagram Live every Sunday so customers can give themselves facials while staying indoors and indulge in some self-care during this stressful time.

Build for the Future

While short-term tactics are needed to adjust to our new realities, businesses need to use this opportunity to plan for the longer term, using the lessons learned during the pandemic to build and continue to develop lasting relationships with customers. What lessons are on offer now that we can develop in the months ahead?

First, many companies have been caught off guard with the speed of digital business, particularly in the realm of real-time analytics and brand protection. During the time we need them most, hospitals, health care companies, and government agencies have been hit by a storm of cyberattacks in recent weeks. Have you checked your brand protection and security?

We’ve also seen how businesses with digital transformation efforts are coping much better than those who are too firmly grounded in the physical world.

Here at Simpsons, we’ve dramatically increased our use of digital tools, as well as our employee support program to share information instantly, update employees with videos calls from our MD and track how customers are responding to our crisis communications messaging.

We’re going to break a lot of old processes, develop new collaborative skills, and learn valuable lessons about keeping our employees engaged in a remote setting. These will be key insights to bring back to our physical offices when the crisis passes.

Our message is don’t delay, if you’re not already on board with social media now is the time to start, we can work with you and put together a professional plan for your business, that will make sure you stay connected with your customers and communities. Get in touch with the team today.


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