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Now is the time

Now is the time

There’s a meme circulating at the moment.

“Remember the good old days when all we talked about was Brexit?”

And indeed, those seem like relatively untroubled times as we head into the coming period.

It’s hard to know the right tone in a time like this. Businesses and brands are already losing emotional connection by overtly trying to capitalise on the situation. Not cool. But business, as we know, must also try and find a way to continue and to lead its people.

I have been toying myself about whether to write something given the sensitivity of the time. But I do feel that now, more than ever, is a time to be digitally present both as a business and as an individual, in the right way. For reassurance and support. For help and guidance. And frankly – to laugh!

With most who are able to now working remotely, people are more tuned in than ever. So showing up as a leader, being present, communicating in the right way, has never been more important.

If you hold any kind of leadership role – whether that is leading a team or an entire business or a virtual community, it is time to think about how you are present for the people who follow you. Lead the way digitally by showing up regularly. Think about how you use your channels for different purposes. Email for formal communications and updates with your team and clients. Zoom calls for team meetings and client meetings (comedy background essential for the lolz). Internal collaboration platforms like Slack, Trello and Asana for project collaboration (we also love HighQ at She Breaks the Law HQ.) WhatsApp chats for quick-fire conversational debate and amusing gifs. Show up regularly as you would have done if you were all in the office with a hello and a sign off at the end of the day. Update as appropriate on the evolving situation with considered communications based on credible resources. From a personal brand perspective, use social media platforms on an individual level to share thought and reassurance and to keep morale up. People buy people, so if stepping out from behind your brand, business and strictly corporate image is not usually within your comfort zone, now is the time to do this and create a strong emotional connection on an individual level by being authentic and vulnerable.

A few clients have asked whether marketing should continue as planned. The marketing lights should never go out, but consider what is appropriate in terms of tone. It’s probably not be the right time to launch a major product or do that feel good campaign. If you are a legal services business, your customers, as always, will be looking for guidance, advice and information. Review your evergreen and think what you can give away for free in terms of useful resources and advice. Be generous, listen and connect. So in that respect, it is marketing business as usual, with a mindful approach.

I have worked remotely for years now. Sitting in my office in yoga pants with a jacket and red lipstick by the desk for important calls is second nature to me. But for many, to do this every day, all week, is a new game. If you find yourself lacking in energy, low in inspiration, lonely and isolated, now is truly the time to discover the power of social media. Find your tribe. Share, support, brainstorm, laugh. Limit how much you disappear down the bad news rabbit holes and engage with people as you would do in real life. Network virtually. Join in. Be part of it.

Now is a time for community in every possible way. Look after your neighbours both in real life and digitally.

For anyone who would like a virtual coffee over the coming weeks, I am available for Zooms. Comedy background of your choice and the very real possibility of both my children joining us a la BBC News presenter. And we can’t really get enough of that clip can we? So here it is again.

Wishing everyone luck with the weeks ahead. Stay strong and keep laughing!

I am a marketing coach and work with legal services businesses, I specialise in working with founders who are innovating and doing things differently. Drop me a line on here for a virtual coffee break and a Zoom call.

Join me on @hburness on Twitter. Currently sharing, amongst many other things, an 80s song a day to wash your hands to. (Sometimes I tall about marketing and legal innovation too.)

Follow me on @helenloves80s on TikTok for lip syncing and miming to your favourite 80s hits.

12 April 2022

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