I want to help you develop the right message for the audience that needs it the most.
Today marks one month since I last went into my office. As I think about the last 30 days of quarantine — and however many we have left — I realize how overwhelmed I am by the amount of information being thrown at me daily. The news channels, the Facebook memes, the Instagram challenges, the never-ending group chats. I had to take a break from everything and force myself to sit down and write. The irony? For someone who’s been absorbing content all day, I find myself longing for the right words.
Just. Keep. Typing.
As overwhelmed as I am by this never-ending flow of information, I also know how important the right message can be if consumed at the right time. I want to help you come up with content that’ll empower you, your audience, and those who, like me, are craving meaningful sentences to help us get through the day.
From a marketer to you — business owner, social media manager, entrepreneur, writer, influencer … Whatever you are or want to be, here’s my take on how you can support your brand during COVID-19.
Your message matters more than ever
It’s not surprising that my screen time has significantly increased during quarantine. I talk to my friends and family via text, check social media hourly, get news alerts sent directly to my phone, and challenge my boyfriend to daily crossword battles I always seem to lose. The way we interact with technology is changing, so why are companies using the same messages they developed before the pandemic? Our habits have changed, and so should brands’ content strategies.
Instead of simply sharing mindless content on your social platforms and email campaigns, it is your responsibility to adapt to what’s happening in the world and find a way to connect with your audience. Be compassionate, be transparent, and be mindful of what you say. But most importantly, be there for those who have been there for you.
Brands to look up to: Much like our phone habits are changing, so are our eating habits. Buzzfeed’s Tasty has done a great job at keeping their followers entertained with delicious and simple recipes while also being mindful of how people are affected by COVID-19.
Allow Yourself to be Vulnerable
During the second week of quarantine my boss asked me a simple “How are you holding up?” and after years of mastering the art of not crying at work, it finally happened. I broke down and had to mute myself on Skype because I couldn’t stop sobbing. I was stressed, anxious, and felt lonelier than ever. Fortunately, he was kind and understanding and let me vent and explain my frustrations.
So how can his behavior translate to brands?
We are all doing the best we can and there’s nothing wrong with admitting this for your brand. It’s okay to share relatable content and admit that we’re all struggling together. If you can accomplish this without crying in front of your boss, bonus points for you!
Brands to look up to: Companies are keeping things relatable by helping make the new work-from-home standard a bit easier. Popeyes, for instance, promised to give out their Netflix password to 1,000 people. Not only was this funny and creative, but they also addressed the struggle of finding at-home entertainment.
Follow your own rules
Being mindful of the current situation doesn’t mean you have to completely abandon the voice you’ve been developing for your brand. In fact, you should take advantage of that voice and continue to explore what the right message can help you accomplish. As you develop new communications, I encourage you to avoid insensitive jokes, stay away from a transactional tone, and address the fears and concerns your readers are experiencing.
Brands to look up to: Hallmark knows how much we love Holiday movies and how much we needed them in March! As we all adjusted to the first weeks of quarantine, Hallmark’s Christmas Movie Marathon kept us entertained for three days. They adjusted their original plan to give their audience what they needed. And the audience loved it!
Developing the right message for the brand I represent is something I’m struggling to navigate daily. Fortunately, I have great marketers around me who remind me to be genuine, be kind, and be honest. I’m hoping to reflect these three values in all my messages moving forward. Way after the storm has passed.
Let us help!
I met Katie Lantukh in Knoxville, Tennessee in 2015. She guided me through my first internship and became a true friend. A few years later we met again in Atlanta, Georgia, and worked together building a marketing department from scratch. I saw her become a mother of two, open her own business, succeed and grow. All while still finding time to meet me for a cup of coffee.
During times of uncertainty, Katie has been beyond supportive, empathetic, loving and transparent. She can help you do the same for your business.
Learn more about how Katie and the Murphy Marketing team can help you grow your organization through tailored messages for your audience.