A social media guide for unforeseen and uncertain circumstances, by Social Media Specialist, Katrina Legault.
We asked our favorite Social Media Specialist, Katrina Legault, about the best way to communicate online during a global crisis. We don’t know the effects being felt by individual members of our online audience. Are they still working? Remotely or in person? Has their family been affected? How nervous are they about the future? Promoting ourselves online during this time might not feel quite right, but does that mean we should be silent on social media? In short; NO! Your audience is spending more time online than ever – and you absolutely should continue to engage them.
It may feel daunting – you might not have the same access to gorgeous images of new kitchen projects, or to a team of smiling colleagues standing side by side. However, we promise you that there are a few very simple things that you can easily throw together from your home office, your smartphone and even your sweatpants… and it’s (almost) as easy as 1, 2, 3!
Let your audience know how you are helping your community #FlattenTheCurve.
Have you closed your showroom for the safety of your clients and staff? Are you considered to be an essential service? Have you implemented safety measures in the shop? The key to awesome social media is keeping your audience informed, and this situation is no exception. Let your followers know how you’re handling the situation, and what you are doing to ensure quality customer service despite difficult times. You’re always there for support, and that should be at the forefront of your key messaging.
If you’re still working on design projects, for example, snap a picture of your at-home set up! Let your clients and potential clients know that you are still thinking about them and their projects and gives them an inside look at what you are up to behind the scenes!
The key to awesome social media, in and out of a crisis, is consistency. If you are not consistently publishing content that is relevant, unique, and engaging, your audience won’t really have a good reason to stick around.
In times like these, you’ll have to gear up with your best thinking cap and think of some out-of-the-box ideas. Start a group chat with your team and ask your coworkers what they find is engaging content. Maybe you have an awesome 3D render that is ready and can be easily shared. Maybe you want to tell your clients how they can start planning their next project while in self-isolation. Share away! Be creative.
Be mindful of the message that you are sending about your business.
This is a very challenging time for everyone. There is not a single person who isn’t affected by this crisis, and it’s not the time to advertise regular day-to-day activities. Your key messaging on social media should be carefully crafted to communicate your business’ message and current business practices but should be mindful of the times and the struggle that most businesses and individuals are facing.
Reminding your community that you are present for them, that you’re are taking initiatives and being creative, are positive ways to stay active on your social media platforms. You could start a campaign showing everyone’s home office set-up. How about what your staff is doing to juggle their work and their personal lives while being self-isolated at home? Be creative, but mindful, and there are endless ways to show your community spirit and stay in touch with your audience.
Get to know your platforms.
There are a bunch of different channels that you can use to publish your content. However, it’s not because you can, that you should. Company culture publications are fun for Facebook and Instagram, but maybe not appropriate for LinkedIn. Similarly, business articles and relevant press can be shared on LinkedIn but might not be interesting for your Instagram audience. And then there’s Twitter, Snapchat, YouTube, and the infamous TikTok which are all great options, but you shouldn’t bite on more than you can chew. Pick a few to start off with and get the ball rolling there before you venture into other channels.
Engage with your online community.
Down time is also prime time to engage with the community you have on social media. This is something that is constantly shoved to the bottom of the to-do list because, let’s be real, there isn’t enough time in a day.
A huge part of having a growing, positive online community is to engage with what your other community members are doing and talking about. Be part of the discussion, comment on relevant publications, share their content, follow partners and suppliers that you haven’t had a chance to follow before. There is so much going on online that you can interact with and that will, on the flip side, give you some leverage to getting back on your feet when this all blows over.