Almost everyone has been affected by the Coronavirus pandemic. But we should, absolutely, continue responsibly selling our services to each other. Workers need paying. Families need feeding.
The most effective marketing - not only during this pandemic, but always - anchors meaning in truth, empathy, love, faith, community engagement, self-awareness, the feeling of making a difference, and a sense of rootedness in place and time.
None of us can predict what will happen next. But there are things we can do to take less of a hit and hand out more help while everyone’s budgets are slashed.
Talking of budgets, slowing down marketing or offering mega deals (50 per cent off with the code #corona2020!) isn’t going to help. A half-price sale will do nothing for a customer base that’s currently anxious, home alone and uncertain of the future.
Instead, focussing on the bigger picture where brand-building is concerned will make sure you come out the other end of this crisis not just living, but thriving - and having helped others thrive too. Business owners, now is the time to walk your talk, take care of your people and your clients, and remember the values you voice at a time it really matters.
Be conscious with your content
Our brains are pummelled with worst-case scenarios right now. Nothing is more important than sensitivity and empathy. This can run the gamut from a simple observation of human truth, to a story that makes your followers feel less alone.
Your people are waiting for you to lead, creating content that shows you truly value in them. Content surrounding mental health and physical health, content that keeps us calm (or even cracks a smile), content that keeps us busy. It all helps.
Innocent, as usual, has the best copywriters, working magic on the brand’s marketing. This contribution to crisis communication is all of the above and more:
Stay off the soapbox
Now is not the right time to share any inflammatory opinions, even if they’re coming from a good place. Mass trauma has meant social sharing is coming from all angles - some criticising those going to work, others saying this is all over-the-top. As a brand, it helps to show compassion for everyone through this topsy-turvy time. Everyone’s on their phones - make sure your contribution counts.
Consider how your messaging affects others
Blogs, emails and social media are the number one vehicle to deliver messages, so you need to make sure they’re supportive. Every piece of content you create and send out can affect the quality of our collective consciousness. Leave followers who interact with you feeling better than they did before you popped up, whether that’s on their Facebook feed or in their inbox. Before you hit the send button, make sure that what you’re saying does empowers the clients you serve - or at least does no harm.
You can still be one of the good guys without compromising the effectiveness of your marketing. Clients are blood, flesh and feelings, not cash points. Act out your values, show your personality. It doesn’t have to be outrageous or radical, just original, empathetic, helpful and conversational. Make it count.