Community platform for communicators and marketers who have had to rapidly adapt to a changing market in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.
These have been drastic times. As we stayed apart in 2020 in order to band together, our global efforts of social distancing have had significant impacts on the way we do business. We’ve had to be careful, smart, strategic and creative, to keep businesses operating and mitigate anxiety for employees, members, clients and suppliers.
We believe in the creative power of the human mind and by putting our heads together, we can come up with creative and innovative solutions to help many brands come out the other side of this.
To do our bit, we launched OTM Outreach 2020. It is a free virtual helpline and shared platform for marketing, communications, and creative advice and insights. Whether you have questions about digital marketing, content creation, public relations, client or employee communications or change management, we’re here to help our community communicate and respond as best they can in this changing climate.
The helpline to submit questions is available via the form below. We also hosted a live weekly Q&A sessions in the first half of the year. Recordings are available on our blog and the OTM Outreach 2020 Half Yearly Report is now available for download.
Recorded Live Q&A Webinars | Related articles
Submit your question to our Free Virtual Helpline using the form below:
Your questions answered
WORK IN PROGRESS – FAQ will be filled in as questions are submitted. Please note that our team members are providing their support to you free of charge. We’ll set aside 1-hour each day to review questions and send responses.
Email is still among the most valuable communication tools. There are external influences reflecting the downturn in open rates, however as long as your content is valuable you should continue to send them out. Value is the key. Listen to your audience by the numbers and conversations you have, gear your content strategy to meet their needs.
Also, your unsubscribe rates are really important, it helps you understand your true audience. People have time to clear out their inbox, so don’t be too disheartened when your numbers start to decline.
Overall, don’t do the hard sell and keep it relevant and true to your brand.
The most important thing is to keep your brand promise.
Focus on the purpose that you’re delivering on and why your customers and users should keep coming back to you.
Personal human experience is emphasised and easily recognised through video – messaging comes across more genuine and authentic from a champion and believer of your brand.
When discussing process, can you share any tools that may be helpful for creating and scheduling content plans?
Ideas need to be generated, approved and rolled out, so sometimes it’s quite useful to visually organise the process or progress. Organisations of varying sizes will suit different systems. However, we have compiled a list of useful tools we and some of our business peers use, such as:
Try and discover digestible pieces of information that customers can take action on, or consider different parts of your service offering. Tips on the market or perhaps break down your existing content that is assuring people who haven’t experienced your offering and have questions that can be answered now. Instil confidence in your customers.
Also try using technology platforms such as Google Trends for research on high ranking search terms.
To decide on format, look at your analytics, specifically your top traffic and engagement numbers on each of your marketing channels. This will give your resources an indication of where to focus their attention in posting new content. An SEO specialist can also provide these insights for you.
Some of our OTM staff have hosted, co-hosted or assisted in setting up online events with varying participant numbers.
We can provide specific assistance if you are interested in shifting to the online event space.
Here are some links to cloud services that you could use:
Social livestream platforms include:
Webinar platform options include:
- 6connex: Available on any browser or device, with no download required. Features include flexible registration, social media integration, and real-time analytics.
- Crowdcast: Can be joined through a single URL. Tools include built-in registration forms, analytics, replays, and more.
- Demio: Allows for pre-recorded or live webinars—or a mix of both. Includes private chat, interactive polls, call-to-action buttons, and other features.
- Livestorm: On-demand webinars from Livestorm include integrations with Google Analytics, Slack, and various engagement tools.
- WebinarNinja: No need to download software for this platform, which offers paid and free events, 1,000+ app integrations, and even Facebook Pixel ad tracking.
- Zoom: Can have one host, group chat—and even offers breakout rooms. Plans cover from 100 to 10,000 view-only attendees.
- YouTube Livestream: A free and easy option for streaming live webinars.
FULL QUESTION: A lot of businesses have learned to adapt to COVID-19 by having employees work at home and other techniques. Are we seeing businesses start to think about making some of these changes permanent and actually changing their business models? I’m thinking about the consulting professions – are clients / patients growing accustomed to remote consultations?
ANSWER: Yes, we think some of the changes will stick. Marketers and business owners are being forced to innovate, pivot or fast-track new ways of doing things. Many are experimenting with doing things in ways they haven’t done before and whilst some of those experiments won’t work, others will and could create a permanent shift for some businesses. For example, as people fast-track their move to more digital marketing or online content production they might find that it works and they get better at doing it so it becomes a BAU activity in the future. Some of our panelists are seeing that older Australians are among the largest group of people who are taking up social media communications; and the use of handheld devices. They’re also seeing markets and connections open up that they may not otherwise have had; meaning they are reaching new people beyond their current local networks because they are now moving more of their services online.
It is important to consider your messaging and distribution strategy carefully at this time as the digital and print media is very full of Coronavirus news. Consider how your organisation can be of assistance and if your good news demonstrates how you are well placed to help. The link between your news and Coronavirus needs to be genuine and compelling to ensure you do not appear opportunistic nor indifferent.
If you do decide that your news is genuinely appropriate at the moment our suggestions would include:
- Write a media release and share it with relevant media in the industries you are targeting
- Self publish an article on your own website/blog and also make sure there is a feature on your home page
- Self publish an article on LinkedIn
- Create a post on social media
- Consider setting up a paid digital campaign, advertising on social media such as LinkedIn, Facebook or Instagram (platform depends on who you are trying to reach)
- Use testimonials from existing clients or users
- Send an announcement via email to your existing database encouraging them to share the news with their networks
- Depending on who you are trying to reach it is important that in any of the communications or advertising activities you have a clear call to action so that you can capture people’s interest quickly. This could be a landing page on your website with a form to convert; it could be a form or other call to action within the digital advertisement itself (i.e. a Facebook form, Facebook callback button)
The volume of digital marketing emails, social media posts and other online content has increased so much in recent weeks. Should I be doing it too and how do I stand out?
Great question that I’m sure we are all feeling right now. Our advice is that yes, you should be doing digital marketing, however make sure that what you are sending/posting/publishing is relevant to your audience right now. In short:
- Make sure you are addressing a need with your communications
- Make it creative and engaging
- Send it to the relevant people
- Don’t pop up out of the blue in someone’s inbox unless it is going to make sense for their current situation.
See 17:48 – 18.40 in this recorded webinar for more on this question.
How do I submit a question to the virtual helpline?
- Fill in the form above, or Email your question directly to our shared Helpline mailbox.