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should my business post to social media during covid-19

Q&A: Social Media During COVID

Yes, you need to keep posting on social media. Here’s how:

The big question all business owners and marketers have right now is should we keep posting on social media and reaching out via our marketing efforts during the COVID-19 situation? The short answer is yes.

Here’s the long answer on why you should keep in contact with your customers right now and how to do that in the most appropriate way possible. Our Social Media Specialist Hannah McClung answers all of your questions about why and how to stay connected with your customers.

Should my business keep posting on social media during the COVID-19 situation?

Yes. Right now with everyone working from home, doing schoolwork from home and being stuck at home during most of their free time – digital attention is at an all-time high. There are more people online at all hours of the day than ever before. Facebook is reporting that they are seeing historic amounts of traffic on all of their platforms (Facebook, WhatsApp and Instagram), including a dramatic increase in the use of Facebook Live.

your business can share fun images with Facebook live and reach more users

Since other businesses, like maybe your direct competition, are not posting on social media right now, there might be less competition for your targeted audience so your customers might be more likely to see more of your organic content than in the past.

Note: There’s a lot of uncertainty with what’s going on in the world and especially with people’s health and the economy, so interaction will probably be down because people aren’t looking to buy or spend money for services, but they will notice if you’re posting positive or helpful content and staying top of mind during the crisis.

Should I keep posting the same type of content?

No. You will need to pause all of your scheduled content and reevaluate your messaging. I’m guessing that your customers aren’t the only ones with questions about what’s next, so why pretend like you’re not worried or like nothing is going on? Shift your advertising from selling to brand awareness or post helpful or positive content that is relevant to your brand (think helpful how-to blogs or mindful Monday videos).

For example, our team at Signalfire has been posting how we are getting out for some fresh air while we are all working from home. It gives people who a cooped up some nature content to enjoy. It shows that we’re doing our part to socially distance ourselves while still being active. And it personalizes our staff to our clients – they’re learning that some of us like walks along a lake, some of us own dogs, and some of us play obscure games like Kubb! Right now your goals with social media posting should be to serve your customers (maybe even provide a much-needed distraction or smile). You’ll be able to tap into that loyal audience after all of this is over.

How do you post content right now?

I have some simple suggestions for posting right now. Don’t ignore what’s happening. Don’t focus on vanity metrics like likes and shares. Adjust the tone of your posts from selling products or services to being helpful or insightful. And ask how you can help.

What types of content should I be posting right now?

Now is the time to offer insight into how your business is changing because of the COVID-19 situation. Are you changing your hours or how you get your products to your customers? Tell them what’s changing and how they can get products from you. Share daily specials or which one of your employee’s smiling faces they’ll get to see during curbside delivery today.

If there are local FB groups listing which businesses are still open and what they’re offering, make sure your business is on those lists and that you’re interacting with those pages daily. Some areas in the Midwest are participating in a “Happy Heart Hunt” FB Group where people are putting up hearts in their windows for people to drive around and look at. Decorate your front window and post a picture from your business. Maybe some of the people driving by still call in for an order or will be a customer in the future – or maybe you’ll just make someone smile today!

How can I stand out on social media when there’s so much content right now?

Don’t post your COVID-19 statement every day. Go LIVE or shoot a quick video of you talking to your customers. Let them see your face or your staff working hard to make adjustments and focusing on keeping themselves and your customers safe and healthy. If you’ve had to close, tell everyone why you’re hopeful and if you’re doing anything to make improvements during this time so you can come back bigger and better once all of this is over.

Be open and honest about your fears with the COVID-19 situation. Right now people are looking for human connections, so share the questions and concerns you have for yourself, your family, your community and your business – your audience probably has the exact same questions. You can even lighten the mood (see above) by posting about your cabin fever and how you’re coping – like your favorite work-from-home snacks or how many days in a row you’ve worn the same sweatshirt!

How often should I be posting?

That depends on if you’re open, if you have modified services or if you’re closed. If you’re open…posting daily and multiple times a day with unique content that is real-time is the best. Reminding your customers that you’re open and here for them for what they need is important. Also, posting what you’re doing to keep everyone safe and healthy is a great reminder that it’s safe to order takeout or to work with your business through a phone call or video conference.

The most important thing is to remind your audience and customers that you’re here for them during this confusing and stressful time. Maybe you provide an essential service and you need to reassure them that you’re still open and available to help them. Maybe you sell coffee, and someone just needs a little treat to get through their tough day working from home. Maybe your business has had to pivot to something completely different, but it means you’re able to make hand sanitizer or donate homemade masks to your local hospital. No matter what you’re doing during COVID-19, your customers are out there and will happily consume your message as long as it’s tailored to the national and local situation.

Do you have any content suggestions?

Yes I do!

  1. Ask your customers what you can do for them.
  2. Ask your customers what type of content or what modified goods/services they’d like from your business.
  3. Give back to the community if you can, and post about it. You’ll get a little good press and you’ll also let people know that they can help the same way you did.
  4. Share how you and your employees are dealing with the changes. People don’t need more COVID-19 stats or lockdown dates. They want to know how everyone else is handling the situation because they’ll probably be able to relate.
  5. Ask your community what restaurants or other local businesses you and your employees should support at this time.
  6. Start a social media challenge like getting outside or listing something every day you’re grateful for or cooking dinner with what you have in your pantry. Don’t forget to tag the challenge with a branded hashtag.
  7. Ask how you can help (either your customers or the community).

What if I need more help?

We’re here for ya! If you have more questions about what to post, want help planning and shooting some video content, need suggestions for helpful content blogs to add to your website and social, or have more questions about the ever-changing social media landscape call us at (262) 725-4500 or email Matthew.

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