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Businesses ‘Social Distance’ from Traditional Use of Social Media

Social media has connected the global world unlike ever before, making communication easier and transforming human connection. With many people across the world staying home to prevent the spread of COVID-19, we are using social media and consuming new information at staggering rates. Many of us are having virtual happy hours or tagging friends in challenges on Facebook and Instagram, while businesses are also learning how to leverage social media in the age of social distancing.

Spreading Awareness

Companies are using their social media platforms to spread information about COVID-19 as it relates to their business. Financial Institutions are focusing on the economic impact of the pandemic including announcements about the Federal Reserve adjusting interest rates and unemployment rate predictions. Recruiters are sharing tips for resume building and interview skills. The Healthcare industry is focusing on recommendations for staying healthy such as hand-washing, sanitizing, and encouraging the use of cloth face masks.

Corporate Social Responsibility

Companies are also sharing how they are supporting their employees and their communities during this pandemic on their social media platforms. Google donated Chromebooks and mobile hotspots for rural California students. Google also donated $800 million to multiple organizations across the world to fight COVID-19 and in Google Ad credits to small and midsize businesses who are struggling during this time. Disney is supporting its employees as the senior staff, consisting of vice presidents and above, take 20-30% salary cuts. Nestle is donating food, medical nutrition products, and bottled water to countries in greatest need. Apple announced it is donating 10 million masks to the United States and Europe.

Comment below with other ways you are seeing businesses spread awareness about their efforts during this pandemic.

Product and Service Adjustment Announcements

Businesses are using social media to connect with consumers to advertise their products and services. Restaurants are advertising safety precautions for their employees and customers while also announcing their revised methods for delivery or take-out orders. My local California Fish Grill has been great with messaging what they are doing. Retailers are announcing updated policies for shipping, returns, and delivery methods. Amazon has been very proactive with these notices.

Doubling Down on Customer Engagement

Companies in all industries are using this time to strengthen relationships with suppliers, clients and consumers, as well as work towards building up new business and consumer relationships. Effective engagement will strengthen a company's brand, even in this challenging time.

Finding the right chord is important. Game Stop set a terrible example when it remained open as an “essential” business. Ultimately, both the public relations nightmare of endangered employees and frustrated consumers forced all Game Stop stores to close, moving to curbside pick-up and delivery.

Comment below with other company failures.

3 replies on “Businesses ‘Social Distance’ from Traditional Use of Social Media”

Elon Musk actually took some heat, he was accused of not really sending ventilators to CA hospitals like he said he would. Also, at the beginning of the crisis, I saw some stories about how he kept his company open and ignored government recommendations. On the other end, I also see a lot of positive press about Tesla. Interesting.

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