The Revolution of Digital Marketing post-pandemic
We all know the COVID pandemic has caused many changes in our everyday life, one distinct change being the way and amount that social media is now used. Companies have adapted their business strategies to accompany this transition to being more online. Whilst the pandemic may not yet be completely over, we are slowly making a return to normality. However, this new-found significance of PR and social media has left a permanent mark on marketing and retail.
Transitioning from traditional to digital.
As we entered the first lockdown and stayed at home, companies began to recognise that traditional marketing methods would no longer suffice. The distribution of traditional newsprint publications and advertisements were slashed, and replaced with a rapid growth in digital marketing. Social media quickly became the primary domain for people to not only access information, but also share information about themselves. In a time where we were physically isolated from one another, social media connected us. From Zoom quizzes to posting photographs of sourdough, we were all online. And as media consumption skyrocketed and brick-and-mortar retailers closed temporarily, we saw a sharp increase in e-commerce and social media-based advertisement.
The significance of brand authenticity.
The pandemic resulted in the demise of many companies, particularly damaging physical retailers, and the hospitality sector. The companies that did survive were held to a new scrutiny as there was a dramatic shift in consumer attitudes. In this period of uncertainty and fear, companies were being held more accountable for the way in which they responded to the crisis. We became more conscious of brand ethics; whether companies were contributing donations, applying discounts appropriately and demonstrating support for key workers. People started evaluating the authenticity of companies’ responses; whether they were acting for sheer financial success, or genuinely trying to help. More attention was paid towards sustainability, treatment of employees and involvement in social issues. In response to this, companies took on a more human-centric strategy, as social media allowed brands to communicate directly with their consumers. There was an increased focus on social listening and proactive engagement.
Recognising the advantages of E-commerce and PR.
A recurring theme that we can recognise when reflecting upon business during the pandemic, is the way in which PR and social media acted as the linchpin for many companies’ survival and success. With 44.84 million users on Facebook, and 28.81 million users on Instagram in just the UK, social media sites have become incredible for sheer exposure to customers. With social media engagement peaking, it's no surprise that E-commerce became so highly regarded. Celebrated for its cost efficiency, fast transaction processes, and ability to reach a widened market, E-commerce functioned in conjunction with social media. We recognised that when PR and digital marketing is applied correctly, the benefits towards E-commerce and sales can be endless. From creating enhanced credibility and improving brand reputation, to producing web analysis that allows companies to tailor content to their customers effectively, online advertising has the ability to create a dramatic growth in web traffic and customer engagement.