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Top 3 Tips Brand Communicators Need Right Now

In times of crisis, and particularly in these unprecedented times with COVID-19 rapidly developing, carefully thought out, long term communications plans quickly become obsolete. Teams must act quickly, and thoughtfully, keeping in line with quickly shifting news and regulations while staying true to their brand.

Here are the top three tips for brands looking to navigate the media landscape right now: 

  1. Gut check
    The worst mistake that brands can make right now, is coming off as tone deaf to the shifts happening in the world, and the impact felt by consumers, businesses and governments. Ahead of writing any brand communication, including internal communications, social media posts, press releases or media pitches, check in with yourself, and your wider team or consultants to ensure that your communications are empathetic, and there’s no room for misinterpretation. The way that we make our customers feel at this time will be remembered long after fears of COVID-19 have passed – carefully think through your communications ahead of publishing.
  2. Add value
    Consumers are being inundated with information right now, from non-stop government policy updates to emails from every business they’ve ever interacted with. Whatever you’re communicating right now, make sure that it’s adding genuine value to the audience, and that you have a good reason to add one more email to their inbox. D2C retailer Everlane has balanced the need to add value with the need to move product with a hyper-relevant promotion – its offering discounts on bundles of its coziest work-from-home-wear. On day 7 of isolation, that’s a promo email that I’d welcome!
  3. Focus on community
    Through the COVID-19 pandemic, a sense of community, united through digital channels has emerged as the world is “in this together.” Fitness brands like Barry’s Bootcamp have closed their studios and offered free classes streamed online, while clean beauty firm Indie Lee is using its social channels to share information and spark conversation about mindfulness, and luxury giant LVMH has converted its factories into hand sanitizer production facilities. These initiatives pay dividends as they’re re-shared by consumers who feel taken care of, and media who are looking to share helpful resources. Take note and aim to have any campaign or communication give back to the community in some way. 

Beyond media relations and social media services, Talk Shop helps its clients navigate times of crisis with stakeholder and internal communications, HR support, grant application writing, website re-design and issues/crisis management.