Remember January 2020? How excited we all were for a new year, a new decade even! Perhaps you spent significant time at the close of 2019 planning and creating fresh new content for your social media feeds to reflect your new 2020 vision. Or perhaps you started the new year with an outline and an idea of where you wanted to go and what you wanted to share.
Oh, what we wouldn’t give to go back to those seemingly simpler times!
In all seriousness, though: adaptability in the face of changing circumstances is crucial to keeping your social media presence effective and successful. How can you learn from the unexpected? We’ve got a few ideas for you.
You Don’t Need To Start From Scratch Again
Even without a global pandemic, the life of your business can take wild, unpredictable turns. Your social media strategy needs to respond to these turns no matter what. There’s also no guarantee your best-laid plans will land with your audience as you hope. Having a framework already in place gives you an idea of what content is still usable and what might need to be shelved.
Folks who follow Upswept on social media know how much we love our animal friends. While we felt it important to shift our professional focus towards helping people get service-oriented businesses online and make their social media feeds more agile, we also didn’t want to completely abandon our light-hearted side. Sarah took our #FurryFriendsFriday hashtag from weekly photos to a weekly live video, giving our followers a closer look at her handsome kitty, Zergling, while also continuing to share business-relevant content (and hyping some of her favorite local makers!).
Talk Less, Listen More
What are your followers saying? How are they engaging with your content? What else is competing for their attention? Your strategy should be customer-focused at all times; what you share should add value while also respecting their experience. Continue to remain engaged by paying attention not only to interactions they have with you, but also to the cultural conversations happening at large. Make sure your contributions to these conversations don’t come across as insensitive or tactless.
Be Real, Be Relevant… Or Be Reserved
This suggestion might frighten you for a brief second. Consider letting down your professional guard, and giving your followers a glimpse of your side of the struggle. By now, you know well how Team Upswept bristles at the overuse of words like “authenticity.” (If we had a nickel for every time it was used insincerely…) Right now many of us feel unsure about our futures, regardless of our work situations or our experiences in isolation. Acting like you can operate business-as-usual will likely ring false with your fans and friends.
As circumstances continue to shift, you may find new best practices for serving your community. You may also find that your voice isn’t the one that needs to be loudest right now. That is also okay. Don’t drop off the face of the social media planet, though. A heartfelt message of empathy and concern goes a long way. Make sure you pause any planned campaigns or posts that don’t match this tone.
Reduce Stress and “Recycle”
Let’s be honest: trying to stay on top of the 24-hour social media cycle can be draining. Resist the unspoken obligation to create brand new content if you’re spending more time online. Take a moment to dig through your own archives for content you can reintroduce with a new perspective. Also, don’t be afraid to tap into your own social connections! Are there others in your field telling great stories? Give them a boost and re-share. This is also an excellent time to consider user-generated content. As you pay attention to what your followers say, ask them to contribute to your conversations with their experiences.
Your focus should always be on your community and how you can best serve them, global crisis or not. Let this experience remind you of the importance of engagement, honesty, planning, and flexibility. Our team is always here to help you adapt your social media strategy or any aspect of your business; we’d love to hear from you!