Chloë H Ward
Content ideas during a time of crises
Updated: Jan 5, 2021
The world could not be more unpredictable at the moment. Yet many of us are trying to keep businesses going and remain in people’s minds. In fact, scratch that, if there’s one thing to take from this awful time it’s that this is a chance to GROW the profile of your business or organisation. More people than ever are online at all different times. Creating great content that is relevant to your target market means, whatever the circumstance of your business, on the other side you might just do better than ever before.
Comms Kick has been working hard with clients to adapt and change content to make it relevant and sensitive to the current Covid 19 crises. Here, I give a few examples of work created to raise the profile of clients while also suggesting some ideas for different sectors. Let me know if you find it helpful by liking, sharing to stories, or re-tweeting.
For many, a look at the silver linings will really help them, while promoting your organisation at the same time. The Wedding and Events industry has undoubtedly been hit really, REALLY hard by the Covid 19 crises. Many people have been left upset as they have to postpone big celebrations such as weddings, christenings and parties. In this blogpost written for client and stately home, Birdsall House, I took a positive look at a delay by focusing on little details couples might have previously dismissed as being too time consuming. It was also a great way of promoting other small businesses who would be able to help too.
Other ‘silver lining’ ideas:
Does your business relate to a particular skill? Some people are keen to take up new hobbies during lockdown so could you create a short tutorial to promote your products? This does not have to be really complicated. For example, if you’re a home furnishings business, could you create a short video or blog tutorial on how to create a calm space?
Use the location of your business! As people now go outdoors to use their daily exercise allowance instead of heading to the gym could you create some short walking routes for residents near to your business? Even for followers who aren’t based nearby, people across the world are enjoying seeing pictures of different outdoor spaces so if, pre-lockdown, you were always getting snaps of how nice it was near you, now is the time to get them live!
Does your product or service save people time? There’s been a lot of content out there suggesting how people FILL their time BUT if you’re juggling work and home-schooling you’ve probably lost time. Making it clear how your business can save people time might just result in sales now.
How to’s aren’t just for organisations who provide training and workshops. I have always advocated to businesses that they should create useful content, even if it means giving away a few trade secrets. Remember, blog posts and vlogs shouldn’t be sell, sell, sell, they should give the reader/viewer something entertaining, interesting or HELPFUL. You can create a helpful blogpost and that alone will help raise the profile of your business.
This blogpost I previously wrote for Carrs Windows Ltd gives tips on How to Make the Most of Your Living Room and people are now finding it really useful as they look to maximise the space in their home!
Other How To ideas
Ok, so Joe Wicks has got kid’s PE nailed and there’s a lot of how to craft with kids out there. So think about your target market and what they might need right now. As a working parent juggling a lot right now I was loving this video from Skipton based The Clubhouse Coffee and Cycles on how to make the perfect cafetière coffee!
Remember, you do what you do everyday so you think it’s easy, but that won’t be the case for everyone. Break down how you create what you create, whether it’s a great spreadsheet or a cushion cover and create a how-to guide!
The Voice of Reassurance
The world is scary right now for all sorts of reasons. If you can find the strength to stay positive and find ways to help your sector, people will remember it! As Maya Angelou said:
“At the end of the day people won't remember what you said or did, they will remember how you made them feel.”
(Though I hope they might remember a bit of what you’ve said when you’ve worked hard on content!)
There’s loads of advice out there but it’s not all sector relevant so be the voice for your industry. For my client Great Place: Lakes and Dales, I am working with the team to share information on funding for the arts and culture sector. For client EndtoEnd IT I re-wrote the entire month’s content to provide suggestions to the timber windows and doors industry as to how they could keep marketing their companies in this uncertain time. It included this blogpost on encouraging remote working across the sector.
Even if you’re not sure what you can offer other’s in your sector, find useful information and share it. If you’re on Instagram, you might want to create a Link Tree account in order to do this.
Maybe you’re a team of 250, maybe your business is just you. Whichever it is, now is the time to be honest and share your journey. If you are a bigger team, ask who is willing to contribute to your social media channels. Perhaps people are working from home in completely different environments that reflect their personalities – ask them to share photos of their set up. Maybe part of your business is considered essential work – let people know. Have you ever done a post sharing the background of each team member? If not, now is the time and this is something I am putting together for a client at the moment.
If the business is just you – that’s fine too. Share how you are coping with the change to your business, whether that’s late night working or running on your break. Just maintain your branding and tone of voice and aim for personal posts to take place every one in five posts as a maximum.
Even pre-covid19, WHENEVER I create content that includes the people behind a business it performs EXTREMELY well. Just look at this content featuring my client, which I created for International Women's Day:
Don’t forget! Ask previous clients and customers for testimonials so future clients and customers can see the high-standard you offer. It may have been that you were previously too busy to chase these up but real-life praise is getting good engagement at the moment – people are motivated themselves when they hear good things.
Just as in our previous life, national dates are still a great way to join in with trending hashtags and make people smile, plus they can give you some good press ideas too.
Here’s some coming up (updated January 2021):
Month wide: Veganuary
Month wide: Walk Your Dog month - could you suggest new routes near you? Or a great one for clothing companies.
11- 17 January: Houseplant Week
18 January: Winnie the Pooh Day - which character are your team members most like? Any great quotes you think your followers would appreciate?
19 January: National Popcorn Day - a great one to share some longform content for? Are there films you can link back to your sector which you could recommend?
23 January: National Pie Day - another great one for all the new take-away businesses out there.
23 January: National Reading Day - a brilliant opportunity to recommend titles relevant to your sector.
25 January: Burns Night - can you link to this poet's work?
and don't forget now is the time to start pitching ideas to press for Valentine's Day or plan that content if you want to stand out.
So I hope you’ve found that helpful and as I continue to work with clients (from a distance!) throughout quarantine follow @commskick as I’ll keep sharing successful content ideas and strategies.
Stay safe, from my garden office in sunny Yorkshire (updated January 2021, please now read, 'well-heated attic') , Chloe