The pandemic has taken all of us by surprise and created massive changes in our everyday reality – from how we work and communicate, to how and what we buy. Lockdowns have led to a “near collapse” of many business sectors, they also have created significant shifts in consumer behavior. Since the outbreak, we can see many companies and brands put all marketing and communications on hold. However, every crisis is also an opportunity for renewal, revival, return to ‘what is important’; revision of the positioning strategy based on brand values that support their communities in building the ‘new normality’.
© Remi Walle, Unsplash
Having said that, this is the best timing for brands to review their business strategies and to think about their positioning concept and communication growth strategy. As the leading communications agency for digital business in Germany, we want to offer insights on the front of content strategy and implementation.
Bringing Empathy into Content to Engage with Communities
Everyone has been hit hard by COVID-19. People are vulnerable and may feel a bit lost because of all the uncertainties. This is the time for businesses to display authenticity and to show their humanity which leads to business success.
Brands should create content that is creative, consistent and purposeful in order to attract and accompany the desired audiences through every stage of a consumer’s journey. Since the outbreak and lockdown, consumers have been adapting to physical distancing and are now slowly stepping into resumption of the “New Normal” lifestyle. As now we should communicate with an extra portion of empathy and humanity, here are three steps to create a content strategy:
- Setting SMART marketing goals that provide long term vision and short term motivation. Be Specific, Measureable, Achievable, Relevant, and Timely.
- Auditing or assessing the brand’s initiatives and assets to help brands identify resources they already have, which may lead to a series of impactful blog posts.
- Identifying the buyer’s journey, as consumer behaviors may have changed. Yet, brands should take consumer sentiment into planning, and communicate with purpose during each stage.
Diversifying Content Channels to Reach Potential Audiences
The lockdown means that more people are spending time at home and also online. This results in more activity and engagement online. Media consumption has seen a massive increase. For example, millennials spend more time on online press, music streaming, online TV/streaming than GEN Z who spend more time with online video content on youtube and TikTok. For Gen X similar to Boomers, they both spend more time on broadcast TV.
Many international brands are coming to Europe without any local social media platforms. This is the best time to think about how to grow the brand’s exposure on local social media channels and to build around user-generated content. It is a good time to re-evaluate what social media trends the desired audience is currently following and reach out accordingly. Online touchpoints have increased and might even have changed due to the pandemic.
Although this pandemic affects each brand uniquely, there are also many shared challenges. This is the time for brands to re-think communication strategies and voice their brand positioning and purpose clearly. We at PIABO are here to support all international brands to navigate the complexity and plan for recovery, to create current cultural narratives, to strengthen your brand values, and to lead into the new reality.