“It just feels WEIRD”
That’s the theme of the majority of conversations I’ve been having with my copywriting clients lately. It feels weird to talk business, to market, to sell right now.
I get it. Nothing feels certain right now and no-one wants to say the wrong thing, or appear opportunistic or crude.
Many of us don’t know what to say when faced with difficult or uncomfortable situations. What if we say the wrong thing? What if we’re misinterpreted?
But saying nothing at all, waiting it out to see what competitors do, or staying on the sidelines to watch from the wings, will do the one thing that no business can afford right now:
It’s times like this when knowing how to read the proverbial room, and adjusting accordingly is a critical skill.
Your message needs to be genuine, it needs to feel right, and it needs to be helpful.That might mean that you’ll need to go deeper than you normally would, and therein lies the rub: normally.
Cue the gloriously fuschia pink, jingle-bell wearing elephant in the room –– things aren’t “normal.” And that’s exactly why the way we communicate with our customers needs to shift.
No matter what your content strategy has been in the past, now is the best time to reach out and engage with your customers.
We’re in a unique moment where shifting gears and opening up the kind of dialog that supports your audience through this time is possible. Investing in relationships is always important, but now more than ever, we’re being presented with a chance to build the kind of trust that will support us as individuals and as businesses over the long term.
So what can you talk about right now and not feel sleezy, sleepy, dopey…or really any of the other dwarves?
With a slight shift of your lens there are a lot of engaging topics that will be right for your brand, for your customer, and for your platforms.
The answer isn’t a “one size fits all.” and it does mean that some strategic thinking is important to making the right choices for your brand.
Brands that are inspiring me with their content right now, helping me feel heard and understood, and adding so much value to my #quarantinelife that I want to croon the words of Chicago’s greatest hits to their marketing teams:
This cool Canadian luggage brand totally understands that their customers aren’t boarding trains, plains, or automobiles right now – so selling luggage would definitely be off the mark. That doesn’t mean they’re not staying in touch though!
Instead of promoting products, Monos used customer insights to switch gears and help keep their audience entertained and happy (ok, that’s a dwarf you can be!). Their #AtHomeChallenge email series engages their audience with a new creative challenge each week. The challenge has a social share element that offers a way to build community, win prizes, and has the potential to increase their audience authentically during a tough business season whilst maintaining the integrity of both their brand and their customer relationships.
🎤 You know our love was meant to be 🎤
Monos is feeling my mood right now. They know how much their customers want to hop on the next flight and discover something/somewhere new. So, rather than dwell on what we can’t have, they’re giving us what we can: experiences we’d normally relish in other destinations, in our own homes, together with them.
Soho House is an international membership club where networking, socializing, and exclusive events are the experience insiders expect. It’s very much about high-touch, in-person gatherings with a very tight lock on social media (no photos or videos allowed on site!). The House is members’ home away from home, and staying connected is what it’s all about.
Since temporarily closing their locations, Soho have pivoted in two ways they might never have considered before: 1) they’re providing Instagram content to bring members House essentials like recipe tutorials from their House restaurant and bar menus (so we never need to go without that decadent mac & cheese), and 2) they’ve invested in a new initiative called Open House – online events just like you’d experience inside the House, only they’re available to the general public!
🎵 The kind of love that lasts forever 🎵
I DO miss my home away from home! So I’m definitely mixing their cocktails and Zoom chatting with my Soho House friends.This long lens view isn’t just great for engaging current members, it’s a brilliant way to introduce the brand to potential future members, too.
Online lectures on timely topics, a new online alumni book club, I’ll be honest – I’m not sure I’ve ever seen so many excellent, easy to access, free offerings from my Alma Maters as I’m seeing right now.
New programming is in addition to the universities’ updates on how their medical schools and research labs are assisting the efforts in finding breakthroughs in understanding how the COVID-19 virus works, and how to treat it, as well as occasional emails about student relief funds. And you know what? I’m absolutely fine receiving those messages. They’re sober, optimistic, entirely relevant – and mixed in with content that educates, entertains, and promotes connectedness.
🎤 And I want you here with me 🎤
Sure, I could spend my time watching Tiger King… or I could spend my time enriching myself with cutting-edge information, or rounding out some classics. Thank you for saving me from Joe Exotic.
🎵 From tonight until the end of time… 🎵
These are just a few examples of organizations that have looked at their communications from “before” and found ways to pivot and do things differently. And while they all require different levels of investment and involvement, what they have in common is the emphasis put on how best to serve their community of customers by meeting them where they are right now.
Giving your audience truly great content is like singing those lyrics right back to them:
🎵 You’re the meaning in my life
You’re the inspiration
You bring feeling to my life
You’re the inspiration
Want to have you near me!
I want to have you hear me saaaaaaying
“No one needs you more than I need you” 🎵
Your audience needs to hear from you consistently more than ever right now. And the truth is that everyone is paying more attention to where we align ourselves – and our dollars – than ever before. Don’t miss the chance to be the leader they’re looking for now.
If you have a lifestyle-oriented business, if you’re growing your memberships or courses, or if you have an e-commerce business and you’re not sure how to talk with them, what in the world to talk about – or if it’s OK to talk to them about what you want to talk about – then it’s time for YOU AND ME to talk.
I’ve always believed that life and business both come back to relationships. They’re the most important part of anything, really! And that’s what we need to focus on most right now.
I’m here for you. Let’s connect for 30 minutes and talk through your questions about how to create valuable content right now. Content that feels good, that connects with your audience, and that builds long-lasting relationships.
You’ll leave that GRATIS call (yes, of course it’s free, Darling!) with more clarity and inspiration for how to talk to your audience – and a few laughs to brighten your day.
Because right now? It’s all about connecting with one another, and that’s a gift I’d love to share with you.
Fill out my contact form to choose a perfect time for us to chat.