Before COVID-19 struck, business owners didn’t understand the power of social media marketing platforms.
However, that quickly changed as the marketing world needed to shift. During a time when all interactions were digital, businesses became reliant on social media to keep consumers up to date.
So, how has COVID-19 changed the way businesses use social media? I talked with RevLocal’s Digital Content team to find out how they worked with our clients to shift their strategies in the face of rapid change and how this disruption will forever change the social media world.
Consumer Needs Changed
As businesses began to temporarily shut their doors and people became unemployed, the needs of consumers drastically changed. This meant that businesses needed to re-evaluate their marketing strategies.
While social media may seem like a fun and easy way to reach consumers, it can take a lot of planning to create content that resonates with consumers.
With states across the U.S. implementing stay at home orders and many people out of work during COVID-19, consumers quickly jumped to social media to stay connected.
In turn, business owners knew they had to shift not only how often they were posting, but the type of content they were posting.
Consumers didn’t need pushed with sales. Instead, they needed to know what was happening in their community. With this mindset shift, many business owners had to restructure their current social media strategy.
However, not all businesses caught on to this shift on social media. Taylor Hawes, a graphics associate on the Digital Content team, said that “Companies who weren't willing to shift their strategy away from ‘buy my product, here's my website’ could be perceived as tone-deaf.”
Because of these eye-opening changes during COVID-19, we expect businesses to adjust their social media strategies to a localized approach to provide consumers with the information they need.
Less Sales Focus, More Communication
COVID-19 taught business owners a lot about what content consumers engaged with.
While having a sales focus isn’t a bad tactic for social media, it can sometimes be redundant if that’s your entire focus.
Digital Content Strategy Specialist Mollie Shaw told us, “I've noticed that clients quickly turned to social media as their main way to keep their customers updated about how they were responding to the virus.”
Having open communication during a time when face-to-face interaction was minimal was key for social media strategies.
Whether you own a restaurant and wanted to share your daily special or you were a salon only offering curbside pickup for hair products, consumers turned to social media to find this information.
With changes occurring every single day, updating your website with the latest information wasn’t the best option. On the other hand, social media allows business owners to quickly send out updates.
Not only can businesses send out updates, but consumers can ask questions and get the answers they’re looking for.
As local businesses begin to operate under a new normal, consumers still expect open communication to occur. This means that businesses shouldn’t resume previous strategies.
Creating a mix of posts that include sales, community updates, inspirational quotes and business updates is a great way to continue to show your support and provide consumers the content they want to see.
Social media can be a great marketing tool if you understand how to use it to reach consumers during different economic climates.
With COVID-19, business owners learned that their current social media strategies may not have been the best tactics. It could be said that this uprooting was a blessing in disguise.
After all is said and done, social media will continue to be a way for businesses to communicate with consumers.
If you need help with your social media strategy, our team has it handled. Our experts are here to create a strategy based on current trends and best practices.
Social media is an always-evolving piece of marketing, but we’re here to help you stay ahead of the competition and relevant to consumer needs.
Request a demo today to start your social media journey with RevLocal!
If you’d like to learn more about social media marketing, be sure to check out these other resources: