The outbreak of coronavirus continues to disrupt global supply chains and financial markets.
However, now is not the time to panic. There’s lots that can be done for businesses and destinations ready to think creatively about how to generate sales and how to use tactics such as social media to generate engagement with those people currently stuck at home and hungry for content.
Here are our tips for COVID-19 comms - driving sales through innovative PR, marketing and social media:
Help adapt to drive awareness
There are a number of things businesses can do immediately to keep the money coming in. Think about how you can make the switch to e-commerce, whether that’s focusing more heavily on your online shop, offering gift vouchers and ‘buy now, enjoy later’ breaks or live streaming online courses in return for a donation.
The government have relaxed planning regulations to allow pubs and restaurants to offer a takeaway/delivery service - whether that’s exclusive ’self-isolation survival kits’ or basic ingredients that aren’t available in supermarkets. It’s important that local businesses work together during this time so use this time to create new partnerships and develop a ‘community economy’.
Practical tools to help the switch to e-commerce
There are lots of tools available to help you make the switch to online sales. Both Facebook and Instagram make it easy for people to make purchases via their platforms, while software such as Shopify makes it easy to set up online payment systems and duplicate your content on your social media channels.
If you’ve created online courses such as cooking classes or yoga sessions, you can easily share your content on Facebook Live and YouTube. Mailchimp is a great option for simple newsletters and offers in-depth follow-up tools and analysis software.
Use social media & online platforms to increase engagement
With people indoors, now is the time to engage with new and existing followers and remind them why they love travelling via social media. If you’re looking to drive online sales use your social media channels to share the news with your audiences. Use trending hashtags such as #ArmchairTravel & #StopTheSpread to maximise reach.
Other ways to increase engagement include posting positive and inspiring local news, creating polls and slideshows to make your content stand out, and engaging with wider campaigns such as VisitBritain’s COVID-19 strategy.
Five great examples:
1. London’s Cheese Truck Company have started offering contactless door-to-door deliveries across London. They've collaborated with producers to offer ‘self-isolation survival kits including charcuterie and small producer wine.
2. Helsinki Tourism have launched a page on their website listing digital experiences and live broadcasts from the destination. This includes a virtual tour of Helsinki City Centre and live concerts from the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra.
3. VisitScotland have unveiled a ‘Sounds of Scotland’ radio station that plays relaxing natural sounds from the country’s landscapes. This offers an escape to those working at home while reminding travellers of Scotland’s natural beauty.
To read our full COVID-19 comms business toolkit visit here.