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  • Writer's pictureAmanda Austin

How social media marketing can help in time of crisis

Social media marketing is nimble; it allows for targeted messages to be directed towards friends and followers who can respond in real time. It’s an excellent tool for circulating your messaging during times of crisis, as long as you monitor it regularly and make sure that your content is consistent, accurate and up-to-date.

Social media marketing is powerful in times of crisis. Here’s what to keep in mind as you use it to keep your employees, clients, friends and followers in the loop.

Sharing info as a subject matter expert

Users turn to social media during times of crisis to make sense of what is happening and to generate an appropriate response. To do so, they need accurate and timely information.

Because you’re a pro in your industry, you know what subject matter experts offer top notch info. If you work in elder care, for example, you probably circulate information from the American Association of Retired Persons (AARP), the National Institute on Aging (NIA). You’ve probably noticed, too, that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), has been an especially important resource in directing responses to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Pay attention to what sources are generating the best information, and link key documents during times of crisis. It’s helpful to your followers if they can find key information and updates from reliable sources on your social media feed. Don’t rewrite or alter the text. Simply link it so that your follows can get the full text.

You want those essential health updates to be clear and available to your followers; they need that information, and you’re acting as a valuable conduit in your area of expertise.

Share regional information

Operating nimbly includes knowing what the local implications of a bigger story may be. While the COVID-19 outbreak is an international news story, it also has a regional face. What does it mean for seniors in your community? Are there food drives from which seniors can benefit or to which they can contribute? How is it impacting services that seniors rely on? What local initiatives might help seniors who are struggling?

Following local civic offices, your local park district and senior support networks in your community can help provide these answers. Again, think of your social media marketing role as that of an information conduit. You’re helping your followers to be in the know; that’s what they earn by following your business. That serves them especially well during a time of crisis because you’ve done their research for them. You have the answers they need.

Offering emotional support

Social media is lovable for plenty of reasons. Sure, we get information from social media, but we also meet there to emotionally process what’s going on in our world. Offering a laugh, a note of understanding and a sense of emotional support goes a long way.

Perhaps you’re a Realtor, and many of your followers are in the market to sell or purchase a new home. You want to share messages of encouragement and support about how the market is reacting to current events. Maybe a success story from a family who just had a great experience would be inspiring to your friends and followers. An insight about how the economy and the housing has come roaring back after past setbacks might also be well-received. This may also be a great time to circulate thoughts about how deeply we rely on and love our homes, our refuge during difficult times.

In the same way, if your followers are caregivers this might be an ideal time to circulate some great quotes about the value and importance of caregivers. Humor is also always appreciated. This may be a perfect opportunity to start a daily joke for caregivers or a comfort food recipe of the day.

Emotional support goes a long way on social media. Times of crises are when we need that support the most. Invite it. Relish it. Circulate it.


The COVID-19 outbreak is scary, stressful and unprecedented. Your friends and followers are stuck at home, trying to make the best of their current situation. Reach out to them through social media. Share information, tips, stories, pictures and insights. Help them to feel connected during these difficult times. They will appreciate you for it.

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