March 25, 2020

Shifting Your Brand’s Content Strategy During COVID-19

Carrie Kerpen

By this point, the magnitude of COVID-19’s impact across the globe is clear. Companies everywhere have had to adjust and make shifts because of realities like canceled events, smaller budgets, and the inability to collaborate in person indefinitely. No matter what industry you’re in, odds are you’ve been impacted in some way—and so has your marketing strategy.

So, here are a few tips for marketing during these unprecedented, anxiety-inducing, and just plain wacky times.

Don’t try to use the situation to your advantage.

This should go without saying, but conversion-focused content and anything solely focused on selling is not the way to go right now. People are experiencing a lot of worries—about their health, about the economy, and about the state of the world at large—and the last thing they need is companies trying to push their products or services instead of trying to bring their communities together.

Speaking of community, now is the time to focus on it.

Because of social distancing and self-quarantining, people feel more disconnected now than ever. Take this moment to focus on building and fostering your community—because with nearly all in-person events being cancelled, it’s virtually impossible for your community to get together offline. And if you aren’t sure exactly how to do that, don’t be afraid to ask. I’m sure that, now more than ever, your fans and followers would love to have their voices heard and their opinions considered.

Reassess your pre-existing content.

Everything—and I mean everything—you were planning to post needs to be revisited. Does the messaging still apply during these times? For example, a post about Easter with a reference to “getting together for Easter brunch” is likely going to need to be edited. Does anything sound insensitive now that the world is enduring a global crisis? In all likelihood, some of it may—and that’s not a bad thing. But it’s always better to err on the side of caution and eliminate it rather than trying too hard to force it.

Depending on your industry, get extra creative with your content ideas.

If your company has brick-and-mortar stores or relies on in-person services or activations in any way, you may be confused about how to market right now. After all, how can you tell people to “head in-store” when all of your stores are closed? This goes back to the first tip—do not sell right now. Think about content that is related to your company’s expertise that would be useful for your community in these times. A few examples:

  • If you’re an electronics company, create content around fixing common household appliances.
  • If you’re a toy company, give ideas for games that families can play together.
  • If you’re a health or fitness brand, share exercises that can be done at home.
  • If you’re Likeable, create a custom “Work From Home” bingo board. 😉

This is actually an amazing time to experiment with new marketing tactics or platforms that you haven’t tried before. Maybe try your hand at live streaming, create something using augmented reality, or even post a TikTok challenge. The stakes are low, and everyone’s in uncharted waters—so there’s never been a better time to experiment! You never know what your customer base might really respond to.

You may also need to be creative with the resources your marketing department is using right now. Because offices and studios are shut down, photography-focused content may not be a viable option. But graphic design and motion graphics are, so lean into that—or go through past photoshoots and figure out how you can repurpose some of those images into new posts.

Like all things, this too shall pass. I’m optimistic that soon enough, we will all be able to get together with friends, eat at restaurants, shop, and once again do all of the things we took for granted. But until then, when it comes to your social media content, you’ll just have to make like Ross Geller and…

And of course, if Likeable can help in any way—whether it’s community management, creative, or anything in between—don’t hesitate to give us a ring.

Tags: Best Practices, Content Strategy, Creative, Real-Time

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