Creating Content In A Crisis
When times are good creating content is simple. There is only really one rule, create lots and post it often. However, COVID-19 or as we are already saying in Oz ‘Rona’ has changed the rules. Obviously not just for how your business communicates, but within society in general. Things seem a lot more complex than they did yesterday and we expect that to continue for at least the next couple of months.
The entire world is experiencing unprecedented uncertainty, trauma and anxiety and unlike a lot of crises, it feels like no one is exempt from this. It is so important that you learn how to speak to your clients and customers in a way that makes them feel safe and valued.
Of course, I need to recognise the amount of stress and anxiety that is going on for business owners during this pandemic. Most people are looking to protect their castle rather than putting all their focus on their customers (which is fair enough). In my research though, and after speaking to many people that have survived recessions, the global financial crisis and other unexpected downturns, one thing remains constant – those who continue speaking to their customers louder than the rest are the ones who not only survive but thrive at the other end.
So what should you keep top of mind through this crisis?
Empathy and Compassion
We are all going through this together. If you are downplaying the struggles of others, acting like this pandemic is just another flu season or looking at the struggles of others as an opportunity for you, your old customers will have very little time for you. Always keep in the back of your mind how much your customers could be struggling and acknowledge that. If your business is struggling remember that there is always someone in a worse spot.
At the start of every piece of communication, ask yourself the question – how can I bring people together?
Be The Guide
This is storytelling 101, but in a crisis, it takes a very steady hand. Everyone in the world right now is trying to be the hero of their own story to get them through this chaos. Don’t try and insert yourself or your business as the hero in their story!
However, being the guide will plant you in their mind for a long while to come.
If you are a financial planner, give some financial gameplans away for free, if you are a personal trainer, start showing people how to work out from home, if you are a caterer, give away some cheap and easy recipes to help people cook from home.
As the guide you will ingrain yourself within a persons ‘life’ story, if you try to be the hero you will be cast aside.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen a time when there was more information flying around online at such a rate. It was difficult for businesses to find exposure online before, but it’s even more difficult now particularly if you don’t have the budget to advertise.
This means you have to get louder with the content you create. This can mean a number of things to different businesses depending one where they are at. One way could be ramping up production threefold, for example. Or if your production is pretty good, start to get bolder and more creative with your ideas, this may mean trying a variety of different media platforms. A good place to start is with Podcasts and Youtube. Create a show for your customers to help them through and create a community that will see them stick with you.
Getting louder may also mean advertising. I know money is tight. However, to paraphrase Warren Buffett: buy stocks when the market crashes. Advertising is no different. What makes it expensive is when everyone is buying, when there is a crash, people stop advertising and it becomes a hell of a lot easier to position yourself as the empathetic, compassionate guide in front of your customers.
The most important thing to note at the end here is this is a long game. If you want to miraculously save your business overnight creating more content will not do that. But if you show up consistently enough with great value and are empathetic to the struggles of others the rewards will be significant for you in the long term.
For help or any questions on creating content during a crisis or how to manage your advertising, please don’t hesitate to email me email@example.com I’m here to help anyone that might be struggling or need some guidance. AND I WON’T TRY TO SELL YOU ANYTHING.
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