Social Media Marketing Post-COVID: Marketers Predict the Future
The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted most areas of our lives, and while many are tired of hearing about it, we're facing a "new normal" because of the pandemic. While there are certain changes to look out for, you can sufficiently prepare your business for the future of social media marketing post-COVID by bracing for the inevitable changes to come. This will help your business succeed in moving forward.
Here are some of the specific changes you can expect for social media marketing and the steps you can take to prepare.
How COVID Has Changed Marketing
This pandemic has changed many things about the way people do business and consumers use their purchasing power. For example, the sudden reliance on eCommerce due to worldwide stay-at-home orders has changed the way consumers purchase groceries, clothing, luxury items, and much more. One recent survey of 5,000 consumers found that 36% of respondents did their shopping online every week, compared to 28% in a pre-COVID environment. People are still shopping in-stores, of course, especially now that more locations are opening their doors. However, many people still shop online on a regular basis and the number of online shoppers will continue to increase.
In addition to an upward trend of online shopping, certain businesses and industries have flourished more than others throughout the pandemic. Consider how much people's reliance on technology has made certain applications more integral to people's lives. People still depend on Zoom for connecting with friends and family while individuals working from home utilize Microsoft Teams for communicating and collaborating with colleagues. Certain products have also seen a dramatic increase in sales as people stock up on supplies, such as toilet paper, paper towels, Clorox wipes, frozen foods, and many other household products.
In an effort to keep up with consumers' demands and meet their needs, businesses have had to rethink how they market to their audiences. Businesses have needed to make certain changes when it comes to messaging, visuals, the platforms they use, and the frequency of their advertising, among other aspects of their marketing campaigns.
Pivoting Your Social Media Marketing in the Future
In order for businesses to thrive in the "new normal" everybody is facing, they need to cater to consumers' needs with their social media marketing.
Through social media marketing, you could empathize with your audience through an ad that acknowledges the anxieties or inconveniences they may be experiencing, ultimately reassuring that your business is there for them. Your ad can then offer a promo code for discounts on online products, or you can detail what you're doing to make in-store shopping safer. The key to successful social media marketing, as you adapt to these times, is to avoid coming off as out of touch or insensitive.
People want to know that companies care about their customers, which you can show effectively through social media marketing efforts.
What You Can Do Now
As you prepare your post-COVID marketing and paid advertising strategies, there are ways to ease the transition for your business. Take the following social media marketing tips into consideration as you plan ahead:
One of the most important steps to take for your social media marketing campaigns is to be more empathetic with your messaging. One example of a brand that practiced empathy with its marketing during the pandemic was Ford. As the Coronavirus began to spread throughout the U.S. in March, Ford started by pulling its existing ads and launched a new ad campaign promoting assistance for people impacted by the pandemic. The campaign extended to Ford's social media platforms, including Facebook and Twitter.
Maintain Transparent Messaging
You should also make sure your messaging on social media is consistently transparent. Let your customers and prospects know what you're doing to keep them safe and enable them to shop with you. Being transparent with your audience in these times can go a long way in building trust. Fifty-three percent of consumers are more likely to buy from brands that are transparent on social media, while a lack of transparency deters 86% of consumers.
Focus More on Digital and Online Sales
More people now depend on eCommerce than ever before. Keep in mind that online shopping and sales haven’t necessarily skyrocketed in every industry as a result of the pandemic. However, certain retailers including sellers of groceries and household goods have seen a huge surge in online orders. According to a report from Common Thread Collective, some other categories that have seen a drastic uptick in online sales include baby products, cleaning products, food and beverages, and work-from-home supplies. Depending on your industry, it may be worth it to focus more on the digital side of your business, particularly if your physical locations aren't easily accessible to the public.
Prepare Your Social Media Marketing Strategies for a Post-COVID World
Getting ready to face the post-COVID world of marketing will help you remain competitive and appeal to your audiences. In addition to pivoting other digital advertising and marketing efforts, it's important to give your social media marketing the attention it needs to thrive in the future. Consider working with an experienced media partner for assistance with developing and optimizing your social media and other marketing strategies. With the right partnership, you can make sure you're ready to overcome any marketing challenge you may encounter as we navigate the new normal.