30 Jun Why now is the time to increase your online presence
Our world, even before the pandemic, has been moving online. Stay-at-home orders sped up that process exponentially and in a post-COVID world, your Public Relations and Communications strategy should include tools that will boost your online presence.
From updating your website to introducing digital events, here are some tactics to help you stand out among your competitors even after the pandemic passes.
Social Media Channels
One way to generate buzz and establish your credibility is through social media and that hasn’t changed since the start of the Pandemic. LinkedIn, Twitter, Facebook and Instagram still remain great channels for promoting your content however there is a new player in town, TikTok. Once a Gen-Z dominated app, TikTok has now grabbed the attention of Millennials. According to an article in Adweek, TikTok generated “the most downloads for any app ever in a quarter” in Q12020, which isn’t surprising as we all sat at home looking for some sort of entertainment outside of Netflix. The article highlights that its user base grew substantially amid the pandemic and brought in 22.2 million mobile unique visitors in January, 23.2 million in February and 28.8 million in March. In April, that number skyrocketed to 39.2 million—three times the 12.6 million who used the app last April, according to the most recent Comscore data provided to Adweek.
According to Comscore, which only tracks users 18 and over, the percentage of U.S.-based TikTok users age 18-24 fell from 41.1% in January to 35.3% in April, a 5.8% drop. During that same time period, the share of 25- to 34-year-olds rose from 22.4% to 27.4%, and the 35-44 demographic grew from 13.9% to 17.1%. These numbers highlight why TikTok should become part of your social media strategy. While the platform doesn’t allow for much targeting and an expanded user base presents some challenges, it is great for testing your campaign, product, trend or spokesperson in front of a large audience and see if it resonates with such a wide user base. Keep in mind though that creating a TikTok video will be very different from what you would post on LinkedIn, Facebook or Instagram.
Updating Your Website
While we may be living in uncertain times, that doesn’t mean your website should bring uncertainty to visitors. With so many people working remotely and that trend likely to continue in the future, it’s more important than ever that your website stand out from the crowd. There is no better time than now to take on the project of revamping your site. We recommend starting with your homepage and your company’s product/services page. According to an article on Hubspot, 47 percent of website visitors check out a company’s products/services page before looking at any other section of the website and once on a company’s homepage, 86 percent of visitors want to see information about that company’s products/services. You will want to make sure these two pages are engaging with clear and concise writing as well as making sure your e-commerce platform is easy to use if you’re selling products or operating an online store. Revamping your website can definitely seem overwhelming but we can help audit your site, provide recommendations, write copy that will be engaging to your audience, as well as conduct A/B testing to see which elements of your website resonate with your audience.
Planning Digital Events
When States issued stay at home orders, video calls and webinars quickly grew in popularity — replacing conferences, happy hours, in-person meetings, networking events and panel discussions. As economies reopen and our lives start to normalize, what will this mean for the platform that allowed the world to work remotely and keep us sane with virtual happy hours? From a public relations perspective, it’s definitely here to stay and a tactic that should be part of every company’s public relations plan. Top of Mind held a number of webinars on various topics ranging from PPP loans to why now is a good time for Latin American investors to invest in the United States. We were able to cross-pollinate distribution lists with speakers who we invited to sit on panels and reach a wider audience than we ever could have holding similar events in-person.
There are a number of webinar platforms available including Gotowebinar, WebinarJam, Zoom, Join.me, Zoho meeting, Livestorm and Demio. You will also need to create a strategy for making sure people attend your online event, which can include running paid ads on Facebook, LinkedIn or Instagram. You can also create an email campaign to send to your contacts. If you have multiple people from different companies participating in the event, this is a good opportunity for you to cross-pollinate your distribution lists and reach a new audience. What makes webinars great is that they can be recorded and live online and sent to your contacts who weren’t able to attend the event the first time. If you used a presentation, SlideShare is a great tool to share your slides afterward.