Social Media Do's and Don’ts During a Pandemic
Now more than ever, social media usage is through the roof, people are hungry for useful or entertaining content more than ever. This leads customers to turn to their screens when isolated indoors. Statistics like a 40% increased usage of platforms like WhatsApp, Facebook and Instagram proves that users are looking to stay in-touch with family and friends. As a company, are you supposed to respond or stay silent?
What is good to say and what is not? These can be tough questions for companies during these uncertain times. So here are some tips on how brands should communicate through a global pandemic.
1) Make your content relevant and accurate
Do make sure to re-visit your scheduled campaigns and scheduled posts of pre-
covid nature. Staying relevant and up-to-date at a time like this is key in making
or breaking your quality of communication. If you’re looking to launch a new
venture or project – revise your launch to find the right approach and the right
2) Humanize your brand
Put the individual first. Use this time to connect to your customers and clients by
offering any help you can, asking how their business are going and making
worthy referrals. Another creative way to connect is to share stories of how your
employees are coping and bonding, what they’re doing to stay productive at
home or how they’re juggling their kids and jobs. Prioritize your relationship with
your stakeholders, they’ll remember who reached out to them during tough
3) Show empathy & adapt your tone
During testing times, customers are seeking empathy in the world around them.
Refrain from using humor as it is mainly up to interpretation and can be deemed
offensive. We also suggest you hit the pause button on any previously
automated emails or social posts and take a second look at any previously
scheduled content for tone and appropriateness. Perhaps some of your
customers have lost their jobs, are in a panic or afraid for a loved one.
4) Reflect on the role you can play during this crisis
Based on the nature of your business, reflect to think how you can help those
suffering during these tough times. Is your company providing any important
public services people should hear about? Can you offer something for free or at
a discount that would be useful? Great examples of this have been; making or
donating masks and providing accommodation to front line workers. Any helping hand you provide will not only help your corporate social responsibility, but will leave a remarkable memory as a brand as well.
5) Communicate to your new customers
Customer demands change based on lifestyle – you may have acquired a lot of
new customers that still need to be transformed into sales. Don’t forget about
the core operations and functions of your business.
1) Be tone-deaf in the COVID-19 context
Definitely don’t ignore the facts, instead be transparent and proactive. If every
brand out there is discussing ways to support, pivot or survive this pandemic, you should be too. Communicating as if nothing has happened, is certainly a mistake.
2) Turn the pandemic into a capitalization opportunity
Capitalizing on a worldwide crisis, would be about the worst thing a brand can
do. This is not an opportunity for a big sale or self-promotion – aside from the
fact that most people are being money-cautious, their priorities lay elsewhere for the meantime. Take this time to unite with your customers and show them
empathy. Publicly acknowledging that is it a weird time to promote a product is
not a bad thing.
3) Share fake news or unverified information
Spreading any sort of misinformation can cause great panic among your
customers. Before stating the facts, make sure they are most up to date and
from a reliable source.
4) Avoid promoting activities that are dangerous
It would be highly counter-productive to post images of people gathering or
traveling abroad in a time that that is not encouraged. Keep your customers
focused on things they can do and ways to stay positive instead. Look ahead, not
5) Auto-schedule too far in advance
Planning ahead is fantastic – in a stable environment. Lately, the world around us
is changing drastically, rapidly. Spending a lot of time planning out your posts
and publications for two months from now would not be good idea. Instead,
listen and watch what’s happening around you and respond accordingly, that
way you can ensure you are relevant to your database.