No one could have imagined or predicted the impact a global pandemic such as COVID-19 could have on the economy – except for maybe Bill Gates in his famous TedTalk back in 2015. A recent report by SEO industry leader SEMrush, outlined the economic impact of Coronavirus on the global economy, with attention to specific industries that were affected, both positively and negatively. While most industries have and continue to suffer devastating losses, companies such as Zoom Communications who deal in remote working platforms have flourished, which is evident in their social media marketing. This claim is based on search data and traffic trends showing that website visits had increased by over 10 million in the month of February.
Other industries that were impacted positively include home fitness companies, streaming platforms, and even home delivery companies, especially those dealing with food and essentials. Pharmaceutical companies also saw substantial increases in their stock prices. However, those are just a few of the industries that managed to profit from what is clearly a global crisis.
An overnight downfall
In barely a matter of days as countries started closing down borders to limit the movement of people possibly carrying Coronavirus into and out of a country, almost all major airlines found themselves having to ground flights and lay off staff. All major events right from sporting staples like the NBA and NFL to music concerts were cancelled or postponed indefinitely.
Finally, one of the biggest industries to get hit and create its own ripple effect was the hospitality industry. Hotels and resorts the world over posted a cumulative average fall in stock prices of 22.2% in the last week of February. The inadvertent effects of this closure were also seen in travel agents, transport companies, and pretty much any brand that relied on travel and tourism.
This begs the question, how will these industries bounce back?
The right time to strategise
With the top brass working from home, the imposed lockdown has offered many company executives an involuntary period of reflection. Time to look ahead, beyond the virus, and find a way out of the black hole that was created when the entire world descended into anarchy over the chilling effects of a virus that till today we don’t completely understand, and there’s no cure for.
We do, however, live in the hope that science and technology have evolved to a point where an antidote for this is probably right around the corner, which means if the pieces of your company need to be picked up – now is the time.
The way forward
If you’re looking for the piece de resistance in this article, it was right there in the title all along. The starting point is Social Media Marketing. The justification? It is also one of those industries that managed to tide over the effects of the current global pandemic calling itself COVID-19. With over three-quarters of the world’s population locked indoors, their primary connection to the outside world is social media – and how. From late-night talk shows streaming on YouTube to memes and stories about Coronavirus, the world is connected by a common cause, and it only makes sense to leverage that.
Given the fact that social media marketing costs virtually nothing, it’s only natural that at a time like this, your company needs to be in the public eye, regardless of what is happening around it. Whether it’s work from home updates from brand ambassadors, tips on making it through lockdown, suggestions on how to be more productive with your time, or how-to’s regarding your product or service keeping in mind the current situation, it goes without saying that using social media to keep your company at the helm is crucial
Help in a time of crisis
There are a number of great campaigns that can be run on Facebook or Instagram, keeping your company’s product or service as the cornerstone. Maybe you’re a motel or bed and breakfast that is contributing to the community by cooking homely meals, an IT development company that is building platforms to connect people with essential services, or a beverage manufacturer who’s reaching out and donating its product to those who need it the most, building a social media presence around these activities will help to strengthen your public image online, and reap benefits offline once the pandemic slows down.
If you’re affiliated with a digital marketing agency, speak to your account manager to find out how they can use inbound marketing along with social media marketing to educate internet users on how your company is making a difference during these difficult times. You’ll be surprised at how a little goes a long way.