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Content Guidelines During COVID-19

How to Maintain Quality and Communicate Positively

Even though many states are beginning to lift shelter-in-place regulations, COVID-19 will continue to be a major influence on consumer priorities and business trends over the next few months. The way you market your business and communicate with customers should reflect your brand and the current state of the economy. Here are content marketing guidelines that you can use to stay relevant to your audience and still maintain a strong online presence.

Stay Sensitive

During crises, a business cannot seem exploitive or insensitive to its customers. Using humor can help lighten up the mood but it can also come off as inappropriate. If your brand takes a conversational tone, now is the time to be more somber than normal. You want to come across as empathetic and be positive and helpful. Use words that provide security to customers, such as, “cope,” “contribute,” and “connect.” Tone down the hype. Now is not the time for ‘exciting’ messages, such as “take advantage of low mortgage rates.”
Be cautious when using words that were once harmless, but under the pandemic may seem tone-deaf:

  • Contagious
  • Infectious
  • Viral
  • Join
  • Spread

When addressing consumers, think about how your business can contribute to the COVID-19 response, rather than how to convert customers. What does your business do to support the community in trying times? Position your business to show respect for customers who have been impacted by COVID-19. Make sure your customers know they can trust your business.

Ensure Accuracy

Digital content conveys multiple messages, not only through the words you publish. The tone, the grammar and information provided will tell your audience many things about your organization. If you provide inaccurate or misleading facts about the coronavirus, your audience may infer that your organization is either careless or untrustworthy, regardless of your overall message. Get your facts straight. Use information from the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization. If you need local information, search for updates from your health department and COVID-19. Use proper grammar to make sure you’re conveying the right message. Proofread your message before posting. The AP Stylebook has a guide on using correct terminology when discussing coronavirus. Check the details of your message for subtle differences. It might take more time, but your content will be up to standard.

Change Your Calls-to-Action

A call to action directly tells your customer what you want them to do next. “Shop.” “Sign-up.” “Start.” “Book now.” Considering the climate under COVID-19, you may need to change your tone. Using terms like “Don’t miss out!” or “Join now” might not be relevant. You may need to check your site and look at what you’re offering to be more aligned with current guidelines that have people staying at home.

Check Your Scheduled Content

If you have automated content or have already scheduled posts for upcoming events, do a double check to make sure every post is appropriate for these times. You don’t want to be insensitive and encourage a big get-together on Father’s Day if we’re still sheltering in place. Offers to have customers come into your store may have to be put on hold if your province/state recommends limits on crowds. Posting travel pictures or content that is humorous may have to be put on hold. This means you may need to adjust your content calendar. One small blunder on social media can quickly become a major branding mistake, with far-reaching and long-term consequences.

Don’t Feel Overwhelmed!

Making changes to your content can feel like an immense task. Everyone is having to adjust to new marketing trends.

  • Prioritize. Change your high-traffic content first. Make sure any content going forward is COVID-19 appropriate. 
  • Track changes. Make a spreadsheet of the changes you make so that you can change it back when the economy turns around.
  • Save your good ideas. Don’t delete content ideas. Make a list of topics and themes that may work in the future. Things will return to normal at some point. It might not be the normal we once had, but we will get back to a rhythm.

Maintain High Standards During COVID-19 to Protect Your Brand

Every business is adjusting to new trends and attitudes during the COVID-19 pandemic. Uphold high standards that match your brand to stay in tune with customers and to be ready to meet their needs when they’re ready for your product or service. Let your community know what your business is doing to support and contribute to their needs during COVID-19. 

The pandemic may have disrupted your business plan, but you can stay on track with your SEO strategy. Let the SEO writers with MintCopy provide engaging and sensitive content that supplies information to your audience. Our content team provides keyword research, blog articles and more to keep your business relevant.

Use our online form to get in touch. You can also follow us on FacebookLinkedIn, and Twitter to stay up-to-date with the latest content marketing trends.

Resources

https://www.wordstream.com/blog/ws/2020/04/02/marketing-during-covid-19

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