30-second summary:

  • It’s important to stay engaged with our audience during the crisis, and there’s a lot we can do to accomplish that.  
  • Low budgets, limited workforce, and lesser bandwidth for content production are some challenges businesses are seeing on the forefront.
  • Roman Daneghyan shares four strategies to maintain your social media activity during a crisis.

Social media is a fun place where we can engage with our audience on a daily basis. You’re probably already familiar with the benefits of social media, which means you maintain consistent social media activity. 

Unfortunately, during troubling times like the COVID-19 outbreak that we’re experiencing today, businesses often struggle to maintain an active social media presence. Your budget is low, the workforce is limited, and there’s usually little motivation to produce content with everything that’s going on around you. 

Still, it’s not that hard to maintain social media activity during a crisis, and it is perhaps the only sensible thing we can do. It’s important to stay engaged with our audience during the crisis, and there’s a lot we can do to accomplish that. 

Here are four strategies to maintain your social media activity during a crisis.

1. Repurposing content

If we are unable to create fresh content, we can always work with what we already have. If you had a well-built content strategy prior to the crisis, then chances are you have a lot of pieces to work with. Our goal here is to repurpose existing content into something fresh. 

Start with what you already have: a podcast, a video log, a long-form blog article, a sales letter, anything works. Try to collect all long-form, pillar content that you have. Next, we’re going to use and repurpose that content to create fresh content. A vlog turns into a blog, a blog into an email, an email into a tweet, and so on… you get the point.

Gary Vaynerchuk is a master of repurposing content, he also popularized the content pyramid model that is based on this idea. Gary says he can create 30 fresh pieces of content to be used across his channels just from a single daily episode of his show.  

Social media activity example repurposing content

Using a single piece of content, you can create fresh content for your social media accounts, and it doesn’t have to be a repost. You can repurpose a piece of content to tweet some bits on Twitter, start a discussion on Facebook, post an edited clip on Instagram, or share a concise blog post on LinkedIn. And boom, there’s your content.

Also, there’s no need to feel like a fraud for repurposing ‘used’ content. Most of your followers won’t remember your older posts, and they could always use a reminder, especially during a crisis. Even if we have nothing ‘new’ to say, we can still share our insights from the past. To give your old content a fresh look, you can add some eye-catching visuals to it. You can take the help of a web designing firm to create visuals that can get noticed in crowded social media feeds. 

2. Make use of content creation tools

With everything slowing down, it’s hard to create enough content all on your own. In the past few years, we saw a lot of content creation tools and templates come to life, and perhaps it’s time to make good use of them. Content creations tools help us to minimize the time, budget, and effort needed to create content, and now we need them more than ever.

Depending on your needs, there are various tools to choose from:

  • For research, you can make use of Google Drive’s Research Tool to conduct quick research, all it takes is clicking a simple ‘Explore’ button in the bottom right. Also, ‘Site: search’ function is another useful tool accessible from the browser.
  • If you need help writing posts for your social media account, you can use writing tools like Evernote to take notes, Grammarly to catch errors,  WriteRack to tweetstorm. 
  • If you want to post visual media then you have to try out tools like PicsArt. These tools are easy to use, and you can create great visual content in less than five minutes. Instead of spending hours on design, all you have to do is choose a template and fill it with your brand graphics.

It takes a lot of effort to create great social media content, but we can always make use of content creation tools to save some time or get a few creative ideas. 

3. Utilize user-generated content

User-generated content (UGC) is content created by people rather than brands, which means you don’t have to create anything. Utilizing UGC is incredibly important for social media, and it can be used to fill the gaps in your content strategy. Brands may not be able to create their own content during the crisis, but can always rely on user-generated content. 

The type of content you repost will vary depending on the media. 

Instagram: The king of user-generated content, Instagram has all kinds of options for brands to share content created by users. You can repost to your own profile, share images on your story, and easily browse using #hashtags and the Explore function. Aerie is a great example of how this should work:

View this post on Instagram

“climbing trees, slowing down and sending love.” A reminder from #AerieREAL Ambassador @lindseysmiles #regram

A post shared by Aerie (@aerie) on

Facebook: Facebook is a fantastic network for sharing stories and videos with your audience. You can invite your fans to contribute stories, images, or videos and use it to invite discussion and engage with the rest of your audience.

Twitter: A great place to utilize user-generated content, Twitter makes it easy with #hashtags and the “Retweet” function. You can simply retweet users and add your own comments to spark a discussion. Food brands do a great job on Twitter:

 

LinkedIn: Professionals love LinkedIn, and you can use LinkedIn to promote user content that’s relevant to your brand. You can repost the content or feature some users in your blog posts. 

If you want to search for location-specific content, you can always use a VPN service to gain access to content specific to a certain location. This method helps you to understand how your audience sees things, and you can tailor your content to meet their personal needs. 

4. Keep up with the updates

Posting relevant content is important, but don’t forget to post personal updates about your business. Your audience may want to know how you’re doing, whether there will be disruptions in service, and what to expect in the coming days. 

To add on to that, make sure you understand your position during a crisis. If you’re in the middle of it, you can provide daily updates on how your local community is dealing with the crisis, and that’s a good way to build a relationship with your audience. 

Lastly, don’t forget to show compassion for the victims, and you can even use one of the content tools to create supportive posts and remind your audience that you’re thinking of them. 

What’s your take?

What do you think about the ongoing crisis and what is your strategy to maintain your social media activity in the upcoming weeks?

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