Covid-19 has changed the way businesses and organisations position and market themselves. DTW Strategist Hannah Cheetham takes time to draw breath and consider how organisations need to re-focus social media in a Covid-19 world.
The social media world was turned upside down by Covid-19. The landscape changed overnight and content that was appropriate suddenly became redundant and out of date.
When Covid-19 began to emerge as an issue in the UK during February and March, we reacted quickly for our clients to review plans and strategies. In many cases this meant quickly pivoting to remove or replace content and tailor messaging.
For clients like the Law Society, we re-planned the list of topics we were covering for our weekly Twitter chat, SolicitorChat, and developed new graphics focussed on Covid-19. For others, such as Road Safety GB North East, we updated our content schedule to focus messaging on the increased number of pedestrians and cyclists using the roads.
As we look ahead to the next 12-18 months it’s important to move beyond the react and pivot stage. Plans need to be made for the “new normal” where social and digital media will play an increasingly important role in communications.
If you’re wondering where to start with dealing with all of this, here are our top five tips for getting your digital and social strategy right in the new post-lockdown world:
1. Be clear on your goals
Before you start out, it’s critical you know what you’re setting out to achieve. Targets, goals and KPIs that you have set previously may no longer be relevant or may require revising. Depending on what your approach to digital and social has been over the last 10 weeks, take a look at the data and analytics you have available to help inform this process.
2. Know your audience
When was the last time you took the pulse of your audience’s online activity? Covid-19 has changed the way that people use and interact with their peers and brands online and what you knew in January could have changed massively now. Tools such as Sprout Social’s listening platform (paid) and Answer the Public (offers free and paid options) are great for getting snapshots of online behaviours which you can feed into your plans.
3. Be timely and be relevant
This was always important but is even more so now. Consider things like greater use of long form content such as featured articles and blogs which provide your audience with a more detailed insight into the topics you’re communicating than you might have done in the past. We’re all spending more time online now and as a result are more likely to engage with this detailed content.
4. Stop, evaluate and listen
Things are changing constantly, so consider breaking your campaign or activity into phased bursts with pauses built in to review what is working (and what isn’t). This allows you to tweak and amend your approach to take into account what’s generating the best results and any changes in the wider world which may have an impact on your work.
5. Don’t be afraid to be bold
We’ve already seen a number of big brands successfully change their approach to social and digital as a result of Covid-19. If the data and insights back up the idea of ripping up your carefully thought out plans from earlier in the year and setting out in a new direction, don’t be afraid to do this!
What’s certain, in addition to the above, is that things will continue to change and develop as we adapt to new ways of living and working – and I think that digital and social media will be right at the centre of this.