Overnight, online communication switched from a supplement to the main form of reaching audiences. And now it’s not a matter of going back but looking forward. Many sources, including Forbes and Fast Company, are predicting reductions in business travel, conferences, and in-person meetings and an increase in working remotely when our world re-opens. Ready or not, here it comes. So here are some things you can do to make the most of this new way of working.
1. Relax, Your Experience Didn’t Go Anywhere
The good news is your experience and subject matter expertise didn’t go anywhere. Your reputation hasn’t gone anywhere. The trust you have built with your clients is still in tact. Your audience is still out there—you just can’t see them in person right now. So take a breath and pat yourself on the back for doing the hard part.
2. Let Go Of The Past
Often times, we let our ideas of what is possible limit what we can actually achieve. Perhaps you’ve tried reaching your audiences online before and it didn’t go well. What beliefs around the technology and your audience are you still carrying from that experience? How true are these in today’s world? Just like your life has been drastically transformed during these past months, so has your audience’s. They may be more receptive and comfortable with this form of interaction now.
3. Come From Purpose
Think back to your in-person meetings. What was the purpose of them? How could you adapt those online encounters to achieve the same purpose? Many tools such as screen sharing, music, creating polls, or sending the audience into breakout rooms can help you achieve the same purpose—even if the steps to get there aren’t the same. Thinking about your in-person presence and the purpose behind how you showed up can also help you create an on-screen presence that is just as impactful.
4. Meet Your Audience Where They Are
There’s a bit of learning curve for moving online, especially if your audience (or you) didn’t grow up with that technology. So walk a (socially-distanced) mile in your audience’s shoes to find solutions that help them access your materials. Starting your interactions with an explanation of the platform and how to use various functions will set them up for success. Explainer videos, phone support—even sending a package with samples or a tablet pre-loaded with information can go a long way in making your audience feel seen and understood as well.
5. Be Creative
What if this were an opportunity instead of an obstacle? A clean slate to re-evaluate your audience’s needs could open up possibilities you could have never imagined. What could you do to connect with your audience using some of the money you’re saving on travel? Do you create care packages that show up at their doorsteps? Host a virtual client appreciation night and invite potential new clients? Let that creativity flow.
Since marketing began, marketers have adapted to lots of changes—remember the Rolodex anyone?—and more often than not, have come out better for it. Remember, change doesn’t have to be bad, especially if you see it as an opportunity. At Pond5, we are here to support you in seizing these new opportunities with millions of stock clips to help you create innovative, relatable new ways to reach your audience. Now go get ’em!