Half of the calendar year is probably the right time for review, whether it was about business results, annual plans that may need to be adjusted to new circumstances or trends announced at the end of the previous or beginning of the current year.
That is why we decided to make a brief review of the first six months of 2021, during which we all remembered the previous year, which, in every way, set new rules, guidelines, and defined directions, not only for the current year, but also for the years to come. Whether we liked it or not.
And it seems clear even to the birds on the branch that 2020 was really challenging and unpredictable in all segments of work, we have invested (by “we” we mean society as a whole) huge efforts to function and prosper both privately and professionally. Everything that happened around us also affected the way we communicate. Communication changed significantly and rapidly as well as it evolved, even before the pandemic.
Over the past year, many companies have been forced to adjust business communication especially in the field of marketing, communication with customers and consumers. Although many brands did so long before the pandemic, digital technology also known as “the new normal” has become a part of the daily routine and practice of most companies that impact their strategy and approach to the circumstances and environment in which they find themselves.
It is true that in this period, digital media also achieved exceptional dominance over traditional one, so marketing, PR strategies and campaigns moved to the internet and social networks. Consumers were given many more opportunities to express their feelings, opinions about companies’ products and services through social channels.
At the same time, building the reputation of the brand has come into the focus of the business activities of companies, where socially responsible behaviour in this specific time has really gained on importance. The inevitable tool in communicating such an action was, of course, PR. The evolution of PR with the appearance of new media deserves a special mention, but here we will only say how it was shown in the time of pandemic that for good results and reach of the right audience, is crucial to define who the audience is and only then choose the media. The time of sending press releases through only one channel and in only one form is gone long time ago.
Content adapted to the audience, distributed through the right channels, and adapted to the channel itself is an approach that has no alternative.
Another communication tool that rapidly gained in importance is storytelling, of course because of the emotions it evokes and because it creates a special kind of connection with the audience. Namely, storytelling provides additional clarification about the product, service, brings one of the two closers to the user and “emotionally” connects the user to what the company wants. But the challenge is that storytelling can’t take long (we only have a few seconds to attract attention). Everyone has less and less time to stay focused on one product, story, or video, so it was exactly the attracting of the audience with “storytelling” that came to focus. Therefore, storytelling in PR is the fastest and most effective way to advertise a brand, while at the same time supporting the marketing and sales goals of the company.
Of all the digital innovations that emerged during the pandemic, none were more significant than apps that allow video communication with colleagues and loved ones. Apps such as Microsoft teams, Zoom, Google Classroom, and others have made it easier to do business and connect with family and friends, so companies have embraced technologies that humanize meetings. These tools enable social interaction between participants and already this year, unlike the previous one in which we just got used to them, they have become an integral part of our lives – we are presented with “real” content with “real” people living “real” lives…
So, at the beginning of the pandemic, we wondered why Facebook, Instagram, Twitch and Twitter are used to transmit events and other types of content, while today, in the second half of 2021, we open links with mentioned kind of content out of habit and we have already identified with event registration, conferences and the offer that was presented to us.
So, when we look back to the previous year and this year, we witness that many things have changed, we are faced with numerous novelties in everyday life. It is likely that new ways of working, communicating and use of tools in interaction with customers will remain and are likely to be further improved.
Suggestion of marketing experts, which we have had the opportunity to listen to for many years, long before the popularization of digital media, is that flexible marketing should be sensitive to the needs of consumers, to which it adapts its offer, and it is crucial for the survival of companies in the market. In addition to marketing, we would also add communication.
There will always be challenges. Last year, and unfortunately this year as well, we are in pandemic. Thanks to technology, the business world has adapted to new circumstances quite quickly. Of course, the challenges for many industries, such as tourism, were too great and the consequences are truly incalculable. But the fact is that companies, but also people, who are willing to constantly learn and improve have a better chance to succeed.