3 Key Components to Successful Social Media During COVID-19

September 2, 2020
Hand using smart phone with Social media concept

Well before the COVID-19 pandemic halted the global economy in its tracks, social media had already become one of the most critical components of most brands’ marketing strategies. Now, with tens of millions of Americans stuck at home, and more than half of the world’s population logging on to social media, the value of those channels has become immeasurable.

Much like everything in life, COVID-19 has forced us to reevaluate how we communicate to meet the needs of consumers. Understanding your audience and building key insights from high level analytics are critical components to growing with and adapting to your social communities.

Group of young people with smart devices

Connection is Key

The thirst for human interaction has only intensified in a world where normal social outlets like sporting events, concerts, festivals and other gatherings have been placed on hold. While the annual summer music festival Lollapalooza was live streamed, and Netflix rolled out the “Party” feature, it doesn’t feel the same.

One of the few remaining methods to connect socially with family, friends and brands is through Instagram comments and on Facebook walls. A recent Sprout Social report states that since the beginning of April 2020, incoming engagements have increased on average by 44 engagements per day across all networks and industries. Skyrocketing engagement on social media creates a valuable opportunity for brands to connect and directly interact with key stakeholders. As part of that strategy, social listening and community management are critical ways to build loyalty among members of your social community.

At WCG, we work closely with clients to develop proactive strategies to amplify their social media footprint. For example, in 2019, engagement rates on our client Nielsen-Massey Vanillas’ social channels measured four times the industry average and the brand gained nearly 5,000 Instagram followers in just six months. We attribute much of this success to proactive engagement strategies such as social listening and hashtag monitoring. Consumers respond favorably to brands that invest time to connect and interact with them.

This approach is not only woven into the daily fabric of our best practices but plays a major role in the brand’s holiday planning. The WCG social team will be developing and executing a holiday sweepstakes for Nielsen-Massey centered around sharing baking connections and memories during the holidays, allowing for identification of new audiences and trial for new customers.


Be a Resource

The only thing that has been certain in the time of COVID-19 is constant change. In that state of disruption, consumers rely heavily on social media platforms to stay informed. Your brand strategy should reflect that desire for real-time updates, with content that has meaning, educates and informs your audience. From the early stages of development, our team is constantly analyzing our content to ensure it matches brand voice and provides value to our audience.

A simple yet powerful tactic is utilizing the Instagram story highlight feature. Building out different highlights by topics such as FAQ or New Recipes provides a landing page for your audience to use as an enduring resource, enabling the 24-hour stories to last forever. Adding a simple feature such as a #linkinbio to your Instagram profile is another great way to provide a seamless user experience, while also promoting your brand. If you have multiple links that you want followers to visit, Linktree is a tool used to house multiple links to one link. This could be the one-stop shop for followers to visit all the important links, from visiting your website to purchasing your latest product.


Young woman cooking and using her phone

Added Value

As the use and purpose of social media is evolving during the pandemic, so should the type of content. This spring, we noticed that pieces of content that provided real value and education for a client’s followers were performing the strongest. Adapting to our audience needs, we created this Natural Food Coloring infographic (which remains one of Nielsen-Masseys’ most liked Instagram posts), and this step-by-step Meringue Guide.

A trend that emerged throughout the COVID-19 pandemic is the use of the carousel feature on Instagram. 2020 has seen a rise in user-generated content, especially during these unprecedented times. This feature allows users to share up to 10 images in a single post, which allows for brands to share information and present products in a detailed fashion.

But don’t just educate; entertain. Research indicates that consumers, particularly Gen Z and millennials, are using a broad set of coping mechanisms, including social media, to escape the avalanche of stress and instability related to COVID. By creating content that allows for a moment of respite from reality, you’ll find your audience returning to your channels again and again.

At WCG, developing thoughtful and effective social media programs and strategies is what we do best. Allow us to transform your brand’s social media presence by reaching out to


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