Varallo Public Relations | Nashville, TN

New Year’s (Communications) Resolutions

Let’s admit it. 2020 took your well-intentioned communications or social media plan and tossed it out the window – along with your vacation and your kid’s fall break, your annual convention and innumerable meetings and events on your calendar.

And that’s okay. Right now, as we prepare for the Holidays, we can also begin to make plans for 2021.

If you have an existing communications plan, now is a great time to revisit it. See which pieces you had to skip over in 2020 that you can circle back to for the first 2 quarters of 2021.

For example: 

  • Do you have great new team members who you never introduced because of closing your office for COVID? You can still introduce them on your social media channels and provide their contact information. Consider working with an agency on press releases for your local newspapers – local editors still desperately need local stories!  
  • Did you send your team home for 3 months and therefore skip over that planned LinkedIn training or updating of your social media policies? Get those items on the calendar for first quarter of 2021! While you’re at it, revisit your shared drive to make sure your company logos, headers, and other materials are up-to-date and easily accessible to all team members.
  • Did you plan for those #finallyfriday Facebook posts but drop the idea when it seemed not quite so fun? Be creative on how you might get back to a social media calendar and begin building the framework now. If you depend on your team for content, but they are still working remotely, streamline the process for them to share content, such as a Google Drive or DropBox folder available to everyone.

If you already had a long-term strategy for 2021, does it still make sense? Now is the time to revisit long-term plans and evaluate them based on current events. Do you need to reframe some goals to fit the current global (and local) situation? Has your business in one area grown due to the shifting focus on health, safety, and cybersecurity? Or have you added a new service to address the changing concerns within your business sector (such as patio dining, take-out drinks, digital trainings or tele-visits?)

If you haven’t thought about planning for 2021, there are several important considerations that you should think through before January 1.

How have consumer attitudes changed given COVID, living through this contentious election season, and the information overload we seem to experience on a daily basis?
a. How do you protect the health and safety of customers and employees?
b. What new services do you offer as a result of the pandemic?
c. Are you having conversations on social media, email and by phone that reflect questions or concerns your other clients, prospects or the public may ask?
d. How is your response to this environment helpful, positive or transformative for your clients and prospects?

Where are people getting their information about new businesses, products, and services – and how has working from home impacted work/life balance?
a. Have you noticed a spike or a drop in readership of your blog, e-newsletter or social posts?
b. Have you attended or hosted any webinars or online conventions? What did you learn? What was the response?
c. Has your personal focus shifted – and along with that, the focus of your employees – due to more time spent with family? If so, how does that relate to your customer experience?

What type of messages are resonating with your customer base?
a. Use your Google analytics and social media insights to track which pieces of content people are reading – and write more of that!

What are your clients telling you?
a. Good old face-to-face (or telephone, or email) is still more valuable than all the technical analytics in the world. Listen to and interact with your customers and clients; they will help you reach your prospects.

What is your budget?
a. If you plan to hire a PR pro, what is your monthly or yearly budget?
b. Are social media ads and boosted posts on the agenda? How much are you planning to invest – and how do you plan to measure success?

Remember, you do not have to go through this process alone. We are available to partner with your in-house marketing person (or you!) to develop a custom communications plan based on your needs and goals. Reach out to us today and let’s talk.