April 17, 2020

Keeping the doors of communication open to your stakeholders

Posted by Amnah Senen

COVID-19 is no doubt changing our way of life and daily routines. By now, almost all companies in Singapore have joined the work-from-home (WFH) movement as part of stricter safe distancing measures in place.

At Fifth Ring, we continue communicating internally using various digital tools available and setting some foundations to ensure we operate as near to normal as possible. We have replaced face-to-face meetings with conference calls, refocused our marketing efforts, and reviewed clients’ marcomms plans for the year.

One of the key priorities for us is to help clients continue communicating with their customers during this challenging time. Here are some ways we are doing so.

First, on a grand scale of things, there is no better time than now to do an audit of the content on your website, social media or any promotional materials. Look through them and put some thoughts into updating the information to reflect the current situation, to show that you continue to control the narrative of your company before they are written for you, risking your organisation’s reputation.

Now is also not the time to stop talking to your stakeholders. Take the opportunity to inform them of immediate steps your company is taking in response to the crisis. For example, look at developing personalised emails and make your contact details available so they know who to reach out to should they have any questions. Should there be changes to workflows, inform your stakeholders about what they need to know, so as to give them the comfort that you are keeping them in the loop.

Right now, creating content should already be in your to-do list to ensure continuous communications with your stakeholders online. Look at publishing blog posts, articles as well as white papers that are educational, enabling them to still continue learning as we all adjust to this new normal. The process of content development process is not quite straightforward – Insights gathering can be through 30-minute phone interviews with your experts, and content can be developed for their approval virtually. Once content has been posted, inform your stakeholders via social media or regular newsletters. The beauty of this is that you can easily manage everything without physically meeting anyone!

In terms of tonality, it helps if you show empathy and be as authentic and organic as you can, showing that you understand what stakeholders are going through and are there to help as much as you can. It is important to stay true to who you are as a brand and constantly learn, adapt and listen.

Finally, prepare relevant media statements in anticipation of any sudden attention to your company. While this may not seem important to many, it helps to always be prepared for times of need. If your company has relevant insights to share with the public, such as efforts to support the industry, put them out. But if you are planning to launch a new product, it might be best to hold off for now.

As the saying goes, tough times don’t last, tough people do.

We encourage all businesses to continue their internal and external communications, to give people a peace of mind and to continue staying relevant in these trying times. Want to find out more about how you can do so? Get in touch with us.

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