Navigating the right way to communicate throughout the coronavirus crisis
Sometimes it takes a crisis to bring us back to what is really important – our personal and community health, but also the fact that we are all just one piece of a wide-spread, integrated global ecosystem. When so much seems out of our control, some things we can control, such as good judgement, thoughtful communication and empathy.
So, where do we go from here? We have been getting questions from clients about how to best communicate across a range of audiences, so we put together some recommended best practices and hope you find it helpful:
- It is entirely possible the way we work will change completely for the foreseeable future due to this virus, with many companies, businesses, schools and other organizations going as virtual as possible. Typical marketing messaging will not penetrate the other information audiences are receiving.
- It’s critical for businesses to stay relevant to help keep economies stable. Still, more importantly, traditional marketing messaging is wholly inappropriate and would cause your customers and market to see you as tone-deaf and uncaring.
- Keep a calm tone and speak to how you’re helping patients, customers, etc. – stay away from messaging that promotes your products or company. Remind your audiences that you’re committed to helping them through this crisis.
- Be helpful. Again, many are nervous or even scared, so you don’t want to be seen as opportunistic or add to the panic. Use your voice and organizational platform to ease their minds and be seen as a company that has their best interests at heart – by providing helpful information and timely updates.
- You don’t necessarily need to talk about COVID-19 to be relevant. Think about things that the virus is affecting. One thing is a sharper focus on a remote workforce. Address that aspect by reminding companies to be sure their technology can handle increased remote use.
- Develop bites of content that your audiences can digest quickly. With everything coming at them, you want something concise but memorable, such as an impactful blog post or checklist.
- Apply this same approach to internal communications, keeping your staff calm and assured of your support through anything.
Don’t hesitate to ask questions and explore new avenues as every company is trying to manage unforeseeable next steps. MERGE has been ingrained in the healthcare and financial industries for decades – we understand both the impact a global crisis can have and the associated stress that our clients, colleagues, friends and families may be experiencing today and down the road. We are in this together as we embrace change and navigate these increasingly uncertain times in finding a new normal with confidence.