How we live, work, interact, get medical help, buy food and travel as a society has completely transformed in a mere nine months. Suddenly, we have had to think about how to make a home office out of a closet, balance meetings with homeschooling, and for frontline and essential workers, figure out how to work safely.  For many business leaders, the changes and uncertainty have led to new priorities, shifting messaging, and necessary pivots. 

It’s safe to say that every organization and industry has been affected by the pandemic in some way, and for all of us, it is very personal. 

For marketers and communicators, COVID-19 has required a critical look at what we do, how we say it, and what we prioritize. 

Recently, we conducted a survey among communicators and marketers to get a pulse on how COVID-19 has impacted their businesses and the industries we support. Check out three of the key findings below, as well as our insights on navigating B2B and B2C communications during this unprecedented time. 

Below are a few key insights and takeaways for communicators to consider as you begin planning for the next year ahead.

Silence on social justice issues is no longer an option. 

More than half of our respondents said they would be closely monitoring social justice issues moving forward. 

With a renewed focus on social equality issues in the U.S., companies large and small have recommitted to the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion. Heightened accountability has ushered in a new age of Corporate Social Justice.

Even so, a statement of support is not enough. A brand’s commitment must go beyond talk: It needs to be accompanied by strategic and authentic actions that align with your core mission and values.

If you discover you’re not where you need to be, don’t avoid the issue. Address it head-on and communicate openly and authentically.

Rewrite the playbook for trade shows and conferences.

The majority of the marketers surveyed (80%) said they would be prioritizing a digital presence at trade shows. 

Virtual events offer a lower barrier to entry, which can translate to more dynamic participation than ever. However, an exclusively digital presence makes it more difficult for brands to stand out and make quality connections.

Not sure you’re up to having a digital presence? It’s okay to sit this one out. 

If it’s the offsite dinners with prospects or the impromptu networking on the exhibition floor that drive value for you at events, consider reinvesting your budget into a sales enablement or lead generation campaign. 

If you “attend,” you must take a bold, creative approach to your digital presence to stand out.

Social listening can inform business decisions.

Social media often feels overcrowded, noisy, and driven by negativity. Nonetheless, it’s still fertile ground to mine for insights about your customers and consumers. 

The key to success? It's all about how you harness the information.

Social listening allows you to understand your target audiences more, discover potential leads, engage with your customers, and make informed business decisions. 

Implementing the right resources to manage a robust social listening and community management program is critical to making strategic business decisions.

2020 got you overwhelmed? We're here to help. 

The circumstances the world is facing are impacting every business and bringing with it a unique set of communication needs. 

As you prepare for 2021, if you want to chat about how we can help you recognize opportunities among the challenges, email clientservice@airfoilgroup.com

 

  • 2020 Communications Study
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