Weeks into the COVID-19 pandemic, a great deal of uncertainty remains. In fact, it may seem that the only thing certain is how significantly COVID-19 has altered our way of life. These unprecedented times call for a new way of thinking about content, but savvy brands are adapting their strategies to connect with consumers in ways they never have before.
Data shows increases in media consumption across virtually every category. Not surprisingly, the biggest spikes are in news coverage and streaming services, but social media usage and time spent with magazines and newspapers are also up. Information helps combat a sense of isolation, and the increases may also reflect more down time.
Trusted brands can play a vital role for consumers who are eager for information and ideas as they navigate a new normal for their families.
The Family Features team is ready to continue to be a strategic partner and help you create and distribute your message across multiple platforms, including online, in these trying times when we are practicing social distancing.
Below are some common questions about timing, content strategy and how we are moving forward in 2020:
Should I still be actively marketing during this time?
If anything, Americans are more likely than ever to consume information right now. Practical tips and ideas that can help make life easier are likely to be embraced by consumers who are about to experience a summer unlike any they’ve ever known. It’s a chance to position your brand as an expert and resource.
What are editors looking for right now?
Any content that helps families navigate these difficult times is likely to be well-received. That might mean topics like kid-friendly recipes, ideas for enjoying your own backyard or fun activities you can do as a family. People are spending more time at home, so offer tips for DIY projects and updates they can complete with supplies they already have. Get creative to show your brand as a true solution.
Here is one example: this project, a basic lifestyle release, not only has a strong recipe that people can create at home, but also encourages togetherness and thinking about nutrition for your family. This project was created off a basic idea and gave several tips many can relate to during this time period.
Has Family Features seen a change in interest from editors?
Our editor traffic is actually up compared with typical download volume this time of year. This is partly due to staffing cuts for publications that still need content to fill their food, home, garden and lifestyle sections, and it’s partly reflective of readers’ increased attention on content that helps them live better.
How can I avoid giving the appearance that my brand wants to profit from the pandemic?
There’s a fine balance between helping and promoting, but really, our advice here is no different than any other day. Remember that our tactic is to give consumers useful content that will ultimately lead to sales. Aim to inform and educate. Keep your tone editorial, not promotional. Downplay the branding and keep your focus on providing tips and solutions.
Should my content reference COVID-19 specifically?
Considering that COVID-19 and its aftershocks are likely to be with us for a while, it’s appropriate to acknowledge the impact on consumers’ lives. However, circumstances are changing frequently and messaging should hold up over time to keep the project from becoming outdated. It’s also worth noting that content doesn’t need to specifically reference the pandemic to be relevant; there are many themes that fit within the context of the pandemic but are also applicable beyond the immediate crisis, like Family Meal Ideas or Tips for a Clean Home.
Family Features is here to help and highlight that content marketing is still thriving in this world. We will be monitoring the media environment and will continue to make the best decisions possible for our clients.
If you are interested in speaking to someone on our team, Contact Us; we would love to help! Now is the time for strong ideas and practical at-home content for all ages.
Curious about past success stories? Check out our Case Studies and see how Family Features can work for you.