And then, they changed the game…
That, in a nutshell, is what went through the minds of each and every individual, who is a part of the Mass Communication industry in the past few months. The current scenario of municipal lockdowns, preventive quarantine and social distancing can be defined in one, simple word – unprecedented.
With some brands experiencing massive operational difficulties, some others are left to grapple with the new avenues of marketing; and most of them are walking around eggshells when it comes to reaching out to their audience.
The relationship of brands with their customers has become the modern equivalent of ghosting as the brands, on one hand, are on partial radio silence, whereas the customers (aka TG) want them to reach out.
As the tide of marketing and advertising turns in, many brands feel as if they are at sea when it comes to communicating with their customers.
Here are a few questions for you as a brand –
Do you find yourself confused while talking about the current crisis?
Has the uncertainty of the present times put you in a fix when it comes to marketing strategies?
If you reserve your judgement now, do you think the customers might just forget you tomorrow?
Has the inability to strike a balance between empathy and apathy got your goat?
If your answer to all of the above was a resounding yes, then guess what? You are in luck! Two words can resolve almost all of these questions, and they are – CRISIS COMMUNICATION.
Crisis communication is essentially a contingency plan of directives for an entity to express themselves in times of extreme distress.
With everyone staying at home, one concrete way of exchanging pleasantries is through all your digital platforms. If you are worried about how to go about it, here’s a list of things, you must remember to position your brand as a Crisis Mitigator, as opposed to a Crisis Aggravator.
TAKE STOCK OF THINGS BEFORE YOU LEAP
Your narrative and your stance at this point of time can become quite definitive to your image. Which is why it is important to set a basic plan in motion, only after you’ve gathered all the information you need about the current crisis – which in this case, is the pandemic.
IT’S TIME TO BENCH THE OVERZELOUS PLAYERS
As a brand, you don’t represent a particular set of people, rather you represent the entire psyche of an industry. This being said, the need to milk the situation might rear its head, for the fringe benefits. Stay away from over-marketing yourself by hoodwinking your customers.
USE POSITIVITY TO BUY GOODWILL
All brands understand the importance of having goodwill and loyalty from their customers. Remember that there is a hair line’s different between virtue signalling and being positive. Strike a balance by crafting human-centric messaging while paying equal attention to being sensitive.
EARS SHOULD BECOME YOUR EYES AND BRAIN
Put the adage, speech is silver, but silence is golden into practice when it comes to social listening. This will offer you an insight into what your customers are saying, learn their difficulties and help them out accordingly.
LASTLY, REMEMBER TO VOCALISE QUE SERA SERA
The Spanish saying roughly translates as – Whatever will be, will be. Hold that thought dearer than the other in terms of both internal and external communications. Bring clarity in every single piece that goes out, reinforce positivity when taking a stance and understand that this crisis will sooner, or later, come to an end.