How To Leverage Social Media During A Time Of Social Distancing

These are uncertain times for us all and we now live in a world where life seems so different from what we’ve been used to. The reason for this shake up – COVID-19 or Coronavirus.

This week, governments all around the world announced set guidelines that need to be followed in regards to travel, social gatherings and health that include staying home whenever possible, avoiding social gathering of over 10 people, and maintaining a distance of at least six feet from other – all aimed at slowing down the spread of the virus both locally and globally. These guidelines have given rise to new ways of navigating the new reality. Terms like “working from home” and “social distancing” have become the new norm.

For many businesses, isolation is a scary reality but in this digital age we have so much at our fingertips that can equip us to keep our customer engaged and our relationships thriving. Enter social media. Here’s how you can leverage this tool in a time of social distancing:

 

Own Your Social Media Channel

As a business, it is necessary to remember that you can no longer engage with social media as you once used to i.e. once a week. Social media may have been at the back burner before the pandemic, but it must now take center stage in your digital marketing strategy.

Ensure your channels are current and relate to the current environment. Share timely updates that are useful to followers and relate to their current state of mind. Take part in trending conversations that relate your brand as well as participate with happenings on your channels. Make timely use of GIFs, images and videos to educate, connect and entertain your audience.

 

Engage in Online Networking

In a time where face-to-face meetings are no longer possible and networking events are being cancelled to limit contact, virtual relationship building is the way to go. Lucky for us, platforms like LinkedIn allow us to connect and keep the conversations going. The convenience of networking online means that you can do it anywhere and at a time that best suites you.

 

Build an Online Community

In a time of social distancing, there is a high risk of businesses and their consumers losing touch of one another. By building online communities, businesses are able to rally their followers, maintain engagement and ensure they communicate to consumers their value .

Twitter chats, Hashtags, IGTV, Facebook and LinkedIn groups and YouTube channels offer a sense of community and allow meaningful interactions with customers. It is also a great way to receive constructive feedback and hear what is relevant to your target audience in order to improve.

 

Respond to Online Reviews

Managing business reviews is a painstaking, time-consuming process that you can easily fall behind on. However, now with all this time suddenly spent online, there is enough and more hours in the day to respond back to customer reviews that you were previously too busy to address. Appreciate feedback provided. Appropriately handle unsatisfied customers and extinguish any festering displeasure in a timely manner.

These efforts will especially pay off when social distancing is lifted. Consumers may not receive face-to-face reviews about a new product or service to try but by leaving positive reviews of their experience before the pandemic could possibly mean a spike in your online store and a pipeline of quality leads after the pandemic dust settles.

 

Social distancing, while inconvenient is a temporary hinderance that can be overcome. We are now more connected than ever thanks to social media. The key to success during this season is to effectively employ its capabilities to do what we’ve always been doing and do it better.