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COVID-19 has had an impact on everyone and everything – starting from our lives and lifestyle to economies and businesses across the world. Business processes were forcefully shut down as a preventive measure to stop the pandemic earlier this year and the same has reflected in paid advertising, digital marketing strategies, and brands’ social media reputation management efforts.
The number of people using social media has skyrocketed during the epidemic. Despite that, many organizations paused their digital marketing and even social media due to the lockdown.
Social network is one of the most effective tools businesses use for marketing, branding, sales, engagement, and delivering customer care. And to make the most of it, you should not stop your brand’s social media activities. This is something that a brand should never do.
Contrarily, trends suggest that about 25% of businesses paused their marketing and advertising on social media during the first six months of 2020.
However, this can’t be said for forward-looking marketers.
Facebook reports that 89% of advertisers reconsidered their budget in response to the coronavirus outbreak.
But there is no denying that the activities of brands have reduced to a great extent and has changed a lot during the pandemic. As a result, many have lost their customers and other their online reputation.
This post attempts to underline some of the strategies you can consider practicing to restore your reputation and recognition on social media.
If you too had closed off your social media at the beginning of the pandemic, the first step for you to take would be – evaluate. Peep into the insights and evaluate the condition of your social networks.
Run an audit involving all your social networks. This will give insights related to engagement and traffic your activities generated during this period. You will also learn what worked well and what didn’t work for you.
You will be able to identify and understand the mistakes you made. Doing all this will help you develop or modify your social media strategy.
When looking to rebuild your lost empire on social networks, you might want to reconsider your brand’s voice as well.
Review the voice and tone of your updates on each social network, and ponder – does it represent your brand?
The idea is to develop a positive voice for your brand that is supportive and feels like you care for customers.
It is obvious that people do not want to be pitched directly by marketers in a difficult time like this. In that picture, it perfectly makes sense to build a brand voice that does not sound overly promotional.
So, this would be the right strategy to give your social networks a new voice – a voice and tone that is calm, positive, and always ready-to-help.
While direct pitches may have a negative influence on customer behavior, there are ways you can promote your brand indirectly. One such way is – telling the benefits of your products and services.
Another would be to share stories around how your product helped a customer or how your service eased an individual’s life. Posts like this are a great motivator; they help build a positive brand image among your audience.
You can also encourage your customers to share their experiences or review on your brand’s social network. Such campaigns do indirect marketing for your brand, apart from adding to your efforts to rediscover your reputation.
You might want to make some strategic adjustments in your approach to social networks. For example, you can create and share visual content backed by keyword-rich captions or descriptions on your social networks. However, the type of content you share depends largely on factors like your brand, your products, and the media preferences of your audience.
This way, not only will you generate traffic, engagement, and sales for you, but also build a name for sharing high-quality, valuable, and above-all useful content.
And just for a reminder: you don’t need a big budget to get started with a completely new style of posts.
Influencers can also help you turn up your social media reputation. Influencers are celebrities that you can partner with to promote your brand among their fans and followers. In short, they will influence their followers – who follow suggestions and advice from their idols. This is how influencer marketing works.
Since 63% of customers trust their favorite influencer more than they trust brands, you can consider hiring an industry-specific influencer for your brand to give your brand-building efforts a quick boost.
If celebrities don’t fit into your budget, you can shift your focus on onboarding micro and small influencers. When it comes to influencing, micro-influencers get you better engagement and results than celebrities do.
Micro-influencers are students and professionals with a few thousand followers looking to earn some extra cash. They have an active follower base, with which they interact on a daily basis. They can help you reach specific market segments and target audiences more effectively that too without much investment.
And to get started with that, you will need to have a well-planned social media cum influencer marketing strategy.
The best part of social media is – everything you do here is measurable. Impressions, likes, dislikes, engagement, clicks, and several other user actions can be traced using the default analytics feature of all leading social networks.
You can analyze user behavior on various factors such as the time zone, the age group, the device, the location, and the gender of those who engaged on your updates. You can use these metrics to develop a new or modify your existing social media marketing strategies.
But, using the inbuilt analytics of social networks could be a time-consuming job, because as a brand you have to manage and analyze multiple social networks at a time.
So, you could consider having an all-inclusive social media management and marketing tool that gives you access to all important metrics related to the performance of all your social networks on a single dashboard. Imagine how much time your team will save with one such tool!
Reviews are possibly the best thing that helps brands in building social media reputation. While positive reviews make everyone happy, negative reviews on social networks can boost your sales and reputation.
Take negative reviews and criticism as a chance for improvement. Address each issue and complaint raised by customers, and try to resolve their concerns on the same thread. It has two advantages.
First, it turns an unhappy and unsatisfied customer into a happy and satisfied customer. And second, it builds a positive impression which ultimately improves your online reputation.
But, that does not mean you should respond to negative reviews only. Don’t skip positive reviews as well. Thank everyone who posts a review on your timeline.
If it is a positive review, thank them for their kind words. And if it is a negative review, thank them for bringing their concern to you and assure them that you will leave no stone unturned in resolving their issue.
When you restart your social network to regain your lost online reputation, try to be consistent with your activities. Respond to comments and inboxes on an everyday basis. In addition to that, never miss a chance to socialize (that’s what social media is meant for) and engage with your audience.
Encourage your followers to share their opinions on your posts. Celebrate festivities and special days and display the pictures on your brand’s social network. These small yet impactful steps and tactics help you connect with your audience in a more humane way and add to your online reputation.
Birbahadur Singh Kathayat is an Entrepreneur, internet marketer, and Co-founder of Lbswebsoft. He can be found on Twitter .
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