Adapting Communication in Disruptive Times

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2020 has shaped up to be a pretty interesting year so far, already leaving its mark on history in a variety of ways. COVID-19, or Coronavirus, has disrupted everything from our educational system; governmental institutions; health care; restaurant, service and entertainment industries; and literally how the world is – or is not – engaging with one another.  

It’s a lot to process.

So how does a company provide reassurance in disruptive times? Let’s start by recognizing how far we’ve come in becoming globally interconnected. As the method in which we work begins to shift due to COVID-19, it becomes clear just how connected we can be with one another even when working remotely. Humans inherently adapt. It’s innate to us. So when our norms are disrupted, our businesses must adapt along with us.

Gary Vaynerchuk, notable media entrepreneur said it best. In the wake of disruption businesses need to focus on Perspective, Patience and Innovation (PPI). Perspective that you and your family are in good well-being, Patience that in time things will return to relative normal and Innovation in how you adapt to the new norms.

As your business starts to pivot strategies during COVID-19 and other future disruptive events, keep these four methods of communication in mind:  

Website Alerts

In times of uncertainty, clarity is key. What’s the first thing someone does to get information about a company? They go straight to their website. So it is imperative to explicitly state any relevant news at the top of each page of your website. Include anything from changes in hours of operation, company policies and any other critical information of which your customer should be made aware.

Social Media

Social media is an excellent way to communicate during a disruption when people are constantly looking for updates on the current situation. A great example of this is Governor Mike DeWine taking full charge of Ohio’s readiness during COVID-19. Quick bites of information can be distributed at a rapid pace and communication between top officials and the public is made possible through social media and engagement.

Live Streaming

Another form of communication that is increasingly being utilized as we practice social distancing is live conferencing via Facebook Live and other platforms. Live streaming provides a platform for personal connection at a time when face-to-face conversations are limited but may be needed most. Video is a huge part of how we consume media on a daily basis, so it’s the perfect time to start integrating video into your platforms.

Email

Email is always a great way to communicate with customers who are most invested in your company. Keep in mind, however, that the general public receives massive volumes of emails daily so your business’ newsletter needs to be incredibly timely with only the most pertinent information at the top. Short, informational content will be much better received than a cookie-cutter newsletter about the current situation and how your company is taking action.

Most importantly, at MJ2 Marketing we stress the importance of providing useful, timely, and empathetic messaging for your audience that both keeps your brand’s message alive while recognizing the uncertain circumstances that everyone is collectively experiencing.