Communications today and tomorrow: How PR priorities change during the pandemic

Why can’t you keep silent?

Every communication has its time

Today, we are facing a hurricane called the pandemic. While we all have experienced shock and panic, things appear to be calming down. While PR and marketing plans created at the beginning of the year may be irrelevant, by restructuring of communications quickly will make it relevant again. The situation changes every day — statistics, government orders, transformation of businesses, unforeseen consequences and the public mood. Communication must consider the situation of your audience and stakeholders to ensure you do not cause irritation or disapproval. Important trends of the past several years including “new sincerity”, transparency, addressing the audience through the prism of their needs and pains are magnified in current environment.

1. Now (period of isolation, quarantine, uncertainty)

  • Informing people with useful information by use of “social listening.” Create initiatives from clients and partners, not marketers. Conduct surveys, respond to their results. If these indicate people feel lonely in isolation, show them that you are there. If you learn they tired and fearful, offer the support of a professional.
  • Diversify content and do not try to adapt all your messages to the coronavirus. People already had enough negative news, and appreciate positive thinking — dreams of the future, and when again “everything will be fine”. Examples include summer holidays, returning to a favorite restaurant, or rollerblading in the park. Create a vibe and get involved in it.
  • Team up with the companies and brands you like and share the same message. It’s time for collaborations that allow you to grow your audience. Isolation has opened many doors for us — top managers, celebrities, consumers, consultants — all in the same boat and becoming more open and accessible than ever.
  • Start your own direct communication channels — like a personal or corporate blog. Direct dialogue is one of the most important communication tools today, working to strengthen the loyalty of existing customers and attract new ones. Attract new relationships by discussing challenges and share your personal experiences in addressing them. Let people know how you are coping with new conditions, what is working and what is not. Embrace open dialogue.

2. The moment of exiting quarantine (joy, euphoria, freedom)

3. New reality (mindfulness, economy, prudence)

  • The principle of social distancing. Quarantine exit will not allow a complete return to the level of social contacts of the pre-pandemic. Brands must remain responsible and keep people informed about the importance of keeping distance including minimizing public events for the next 6–12 months. Review planned offline activities and potentially scale them differently or convert them to online. Constantly monitor new strategies, as the pandemic has boosted the development of online technologies and interesting startups. Be the first to start using something new.
  • If you have provided some products or services for free, make the transition back as gradual as possible. Do not turn off suddenly customer benefits available during the quarantine period.
  • Analyze your customer and partner successes during the pandemic. Look for what brought the most positive feedback and good results such as live broadcasts, videos, surveys, AR technologies, or user generated content. Continue transforming and adapting to new conditions.

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Buman Media

Buman Media

Communications consultancy, over 10 years of multi national experience. Sabre winner. Visit our website — bumanmedia.com hello@bumanmedia.ru