Social media should create connections, not conflict

Lloyd Jones has some advice on making your social media marketing strategy work post-lockdown.

It’s no exaggeration to say that, as well as the horrific and growing human cost, the Coronavirus pandemic has caused shock to every single economy in the world.

What was perhaps once a promising financial forecast for 2020 has been vastly reduced. This we have seen in almost every industry, all because of the unexpected devastation of Covid-19.

In such uncertain times, it may be hard for you to know where to even begin to market your practice.

While we’re definitely not out of the woods yet, with restrictions easing and cases falling it’s important that as a modern, forward-thinking accounting practice you’re ready to bounce back stronger and smarter as we navigate the choppy waters of the post-Covid world.

This will in some cases require the re-thinking of your current social media marketing strategy. Lockdown has holed up a huge percentage of the population in their homes, with the result that all the major platforms have announced record user levels.

But just because people are spending more time on social media, that doesn’t mean it’s business as usual.

Associate yourself with good deeds…

People will remember acts of good in a time of crisis such as this, particularly if done with true heart and generosity. Feel-good content that alleviates the inevitable anxiety and panic, and promotes a positive message, will go a long way in endearing your practice to your target audience.

However, you need to show that your contributions are material – and not solely for commercial benefit. Your current and prospective clients will recognise authenticity and true benevolence.

Other positive uses could sharing tips to increase productivity while working from home; and making sure to point your audience towards positive and accurate news. Which leads to…

Be careful what you share

Running alongside the viral pandemic, a recent report by the LSE has identified the idea of something of an ‘infodemic’ – an outbreak of misinformation causing mass anxiety and uncertainty.

An example of this would be the conspiracy posts linking 5G to Covid-19, a theory that trended on Twitter under #5GCoronavirus. There’s so much information out there, and so much of it is totally false. Don’t fall for ‘fake news’. Be careful to always and only reference trusted sources.

Be flexible

This is key. The news agenda might have slowed slightly since the first couple of weeks of the Covid-19 outbreak, but it is still moving faster than any so-called ‘gurus’ could have predicted.

Within minutes, your content can quickly become out of date – or could even seem insensitive. If you’re using scheduling software for your social media posts such as Hootsuite or Postify, take care to be especially mindful of this.

And don’t be afraid to take a break – personally at least. Schedule that safe content I suggested, and log out for a while. The recent rise in mentions of ‘doom scrolling’, and effects on mental health cannot and should not be ignored. Take care of yourselves.

And as protests over government (in)action, injustice and police brutality joined Covid-19 in the constant stream of news and social media cycle, it only gets more intense.

Think about the future…

Ultimately, don’t waste this opportunity. For social media users, technology is only as good as the intentions of those who are using it.

Speaking of which, as we’re largely still all working from home – here at the various virtual Get Seen Now offices. It’s safe to say we haven’t wasted the lockdown period. Indeed, we’ve taken the opportunity to hunker down and bring forward some extremely exciting initiatives…

I’ll be better placed to reveal more in time for the next edition, but it’s safe to say we are all very excited about the future. We’ve been working alongside one of our sister companies to create something truly special. You’ll find out in due course!

Big thanks go to Tony and the ICPA team for their support during these last months, all to all readers – keep on keeping on, and stay safe.

I’ll leave you with a quote by Kevin Roose from a recent New York Times article: “Letting lies spread isn’t that different from spreading lies. We’ve always hoped that our digital tools would create connections, not conflict. We have a chance to make it happen.”

• Lloyd Jones is Senior Client Relationship Manager of Get Seen Now Marketing. Email info@getseennow.co.uk or call 0800 230 0599.

Get Seen Now has exclusive digital marketing, website development and social media member benefits for ICPA members. For more go to www.getseennow.co.uk.

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