How to handle brand marketing through uncertain times

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It’s been a year since our world got turned upside down by Covid-19, and since then society has seen a whole variety of drastic changes as we try to protect each other and ourselves from the biggest collective challenge the world has faced. As a result, the way we live, shop and communicate with our favourite brands has also taken a seismic shift.

With the majority of our time now spent indoors to stem the spread of coronavirus, there’s been a sharp increase in time spent on social media, movie streaming sites and gaming apps to tackle the boredom of lockdown. Alongside this, e-commerce has boomed rapidly as many businesses continue to trade online despite many shops and businesses having to remain closed. Many of these new consumer trends will continue long into the future as people adapt to this new way of living - so how can businesses ensure their messages are hitting the right notes during this uncertain time and those that may follow?

1. Show Empathy and Community Spirit

Most are going through a difficult time at the moment, so threading a strong theme of empathy, community spirit and encouraging sentiments into your content and branding will go a long way in boosting consumer morale and make people more inclined to think fondly of your brand, and may also boost social media engagement and shares too.

2. Build a reputation for “good”

There are many great examples of businesses using this time to offer kindness to the world, with Premier Inns across the country using the cancelled hotel rooms to house key workers and vulnerable people, Microsoft and Zoom providing free access to their video conferencing and collaboration tools to schools and other organisations and companies such as Brewdog and many perfume manufacturers such as Louis Vuitton producing antibacterial gels and washes for NHS and key workers.

Is there something your company can provide in a crisis? Such as a donation to a local charity, foodbank or other community support work? Perhaps there are some products you could provide for free to support people. A bit of kindness goes a long way!

3. Be agile with your content and messages

With the rules and regulations around shop openings, social distancing and essential services changing so continually, it’s crucial to prepare content that can be adapted quickly and posted instantly to convey key messages to customers. Also, keeping an eye on the most popular forms of advertisement emerging and preparing content for that can get you ahead of the game.

4. Focus on tracking behaviours and building strategies from the data

If your brand is one of many finding business quieter in the pandemic, you can use this time to develop some new strategies based on data collected from your current users. Analyse your current data to see what bits of content are getting the best responses based on your particular Key Performance Indicator, whether that is likes, shares, or purchases. Pinpoint which content works best, then work on building new ideas with a similar sentiment.

5. Keep your team and customers connected

With some rules around home-working and travel restrictions set to remain for quite some time, ensuring your team is performing at its best in this remote environment is the key to success. Implementing collaboration tools between your marketing team such as file sharing, live chat, meeting and call functions will ensure they can communicate freely and quickly with one another to develop the best content. Also, make use of the collaboration tools to continue pitching to potential clients, don’t delay until the days we can meet for a coffee again! Another brand may get there first.

Keep these tips and ideas in sight and you won’t go far wrong when handling your brand in any future times of uncertainty.