The image shows the bubble stream in Nuvi Listen, Nuvi's social listening tool. Many blue or neutral bubbles are highlighted and connected with dots to show how much the conversation has spread. Three tweets rest over the bubble stream to show what the conversation is about. The tweets read: genuinely considering buying a Nintendo switch for the new animal crossing release just in case I have to self-quarantine, Every day spent in quarantine is another step closer to buying a switch+ animal crossing, day 2 of self-quarantine and I'm already losing it and considering buying a switch just to play animal crossing

3 Essential Ways to Connect with Customers During the COVID-19 Crisis

There’s no doubt about it -- the Coronavirus is changing the way we live our lives (at least for now). The economic effects of the virus are forcing businesses into difficult situations that may be make or break moment for thousands of companies. 


As more Americans stay home to #FlattenTheCurve of Coronavirus cases, social media interactions take center stage. Especially during a pandemic, it is essential to put your customers first and connect with them. How do you ensure you are building a strong relationship with your customers on social media in this critical time? You need to have the tools to gather customer insights and feedback, and react quickly.


1) Use social listening analytics to identify conversations and engage with customers


In a time where budgets are being scaled back by many companies, accurately targeting the right customers can have a massive impact. When is your intended audience most active? What platforms do they use? Which topics and which tone will help you create content that resonates with them? 


Market and industry landscapes are shifting daily, if not hourly. Real time analysis is necessary to navigate these shifts. Nuvi Listen and Analyze allow you to create strong customer experience strategies. Listen provides you with highly focused insights that allow you to see the shifts in your market and industry. With Analyze, take those insights and, well, analyze them, so you can adjust your strategies to connect with customers in real-time. With only best guesses to when this pandemic will end, quick adaption is a must. 


Nintendo is an example of a brand that has identified how to tailor its content in accordance to customer interest during the COVID-19 outbreak. 


Nintendo has recently released a new Animal Crossing game. As the COVID crisis grew and many countries encouraged citizens to stay inside, social media posts including “Animal Crossing” and “quarantine” increased. Many users indicated that they intended to purchase a Nintendo Switch and play Animal Crossing to pass the time while restrictions on nonessential businesses were in place. 


Bar chart show the growth in conversation involving the words buying, switch, animal crossing and quarantine. By March 20th, the conversation had more that doubled the conversations of the first four days of the discussion on social media
Tweets that include the words “buying” “Switch” “Animal Crossing, New Horizons or ACNH” and “quarantine” over time.


Tweet reads: genuinely considering buying a Nintendo switch for the new animal crossing release just in case I have to self quarantine
Tweet reads: day 2 of self-quarantine and im already losing it and considering buying a switch just to play animal crossing
Tweet reads: every day spent in quarantineis another step closer to buying a switch + animal crossing
tweet reads: my resolve to resist buying a Nintendo Switch to play Animal Crossing during the quarantine is running out



Although Animal Crossing has its own Twitter account, Nintendo stoked the hype by sharing trivia, tips, videos, articles, and prompts focusing on Animal Crossing from their @NintendoAmerica Twitter account. The official Nintendo account made its header image Animal Crossing themed, and the majority of its recent retweets were articles about the game or tweets from the @AnimalCrossing account. Even simple questions posted from @NintendoAmerica about the players’ in-game choices generated over 8,000 replies. They created the hashtag “#WhyIPlay” to extend the conversation about Animal Crossing and created an avenue to collect user-generated content as well as product feedback.


Tweet from Nintendo of America reads: What fruit did you start with on your island #ACNH #AnimalCrossing. The tweet has 86.k comments, 705 retweets, and 16k likes


2) Respond to developing situations. Quickly.


Companies hope to work like a well-oiled machine in times of crisis, but shifting from a shared office space to a work-from-home policy can exacerbate any flaws or communication gaps in your processes. Team members may struggle to communicate, work together, and delegate tasks without the opportunity of in-person communication. These communication shortfalls could lead to tasks falling through the cracks. Valuable customer insights may be lost in the shuffle. Efficient organization and communication are key to keeping your team on the road to success. 


Blue Apron, a popular meal delivery service, needed to employ a crisis management strategy as they experienced major issues due to postal delays and increased demand in response to Covid-19. Customers took to social media to express dissatisfaction about their boxes arriving late, damaged, or containing different items than they had selected. It was an essential moment for them to listen, strategize, and reach out.


tweet reads: Dear @blueapron, you were supposed to send me the ingredients for 3 meals. I got everything I needed to make the first 2, but the third? All I got was chicken — nothing else. I put in a ticket through your website and have not heard back. So I'm publicly asking you, what's up?


Our monitors detected a spike in negative mentions of “blue apron” and the pandemic. After the company’s response, the monitor showed a decrease in negative sentiment and a rise in positive and neutral sentiment.


Tweet reads: Look at the differences between how food delivery companies are handling delivery issues: @blueapron: comforting and specific messaging, takes responsibility, addresses next steps. EveryPlate: terse and unspecific messaging, places blame on others, and no clarity on next steps


Blue Apron issued a statement by the CEO apologizing for the debacle, resolved social media complaints with customers directly via DM, and announced that they would be donating to a charity that is facilitating COVID-19 aid. The social media team excelled at gathering and analyzing customer feedback, addressing the situation, and adjusting their plan of action.


As Blue Apron and many companies are experiencing, effective online reputation management is key to surviving in this new business landscape. With fewer storefront experiences, people will be coming to your business’s social media more than ever to ask questions and will form an impression of you based on your content and your responsiveness. But good content and quick responses are just one piece of the puzzle. Helping new customers find your business is another key component. An important component to online reputation management is influencer marketing. It’s always been a huge component of brand management and will become increasingly important as consumers flock to social media to socialize and pass the time.


Nuvi Plan, Publish and Engage can help your teams collaborate on communications with your customers on social media. Whether you’re crafting a response to a customer service issue that was raised via Facebook or working on a post that highlights your response to the COVID-19 crisis, or both, we can help streamline the process. 


Plan and Publish take a strategy from ideation to publication. They include a Kanban board setup with unlimited user accounts and integrated team chat, allowing employees to collaborate across departments. With Engage, your team can respond from Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram all in one centralized inbox, create templates for faster responses, and assign specific users to respond to messages. In situations where crisis management is required, you want your team to have the tools to respond decisively and efficiently. 


Want to learn more about how our products work together? We’ve got you covered.


3) Online Reputation Management and Brand Loyalty


The old adage “If you want something, just ask for it” still rings true today. Asking your advocates to share their experience in the form of reviews can help your business build its reputation. Showing you value your customer’s experiences and input, makes them feel important, which builds brand loyalty.


Presenting a cohesive “face” of your brand composed of both reviews and listings can further customer loyalty and further build your online reputation. With all of the reviewing platforms available, it is important to be thorough. Nuvi Review allows your team to view your reviews on one centralized platform, create templates for review invitations, send review invitations via text or email, and track the progress of the review requests. With Nuvi Locate, you can keep all of your online listings up-to-date, streamline Google business publishing, and manage your reviews. 


Staying on top of reviews and maintaining up-to-date listings will organically boost your business’ SEO. Reviews are also important because they can be a great avenue for gathering UGC!


Streaming giant Netflix has been keeping an eye on what its viewers are saying about its new docuseries Tiger King. Netflix has been sharing the viewers’ takes on the show to build awareness and encourage even more people to share their own “reviews” of the new programming. 


This tweet that was retweeted by Netflix US reads: has anyone seen Tiger King on Netflix?!?! it is crazy!!!!
tweet that was retweeted by Netflix US reads: At least we have "Tiger King." the tweet has 71 comments, 284 retweets, and 2.4k likes
This tweet that was retweeted by Netflix US reads: Everyone: OMG "Love is Blind" is so crazy! Netflix: #tigerking. Below the text is the Tiger King actor in front of a lion cage saying I'm gonna show you some stuff.
This tweet that was retweeted by Netflix US reads: Joe Exotic from "Tiger King got TWO straight guys to marry him and I can't get ONE straight guy to call me his girlfriend! The tweet has 254 comments, 629 retweets, and 8.6k likes
This tweet that was retweeted by Netflix US reads: Tiger King is the craziest shit I have ever seen. how can an part fo this actually of happened and how is it still happening?! My reaction to every single episode is below. The image is of a puppet monkey who's mouth is open wide in shock.

In this case, Netflix is engaging with their viewers and leveraging the organic conversations into content to enhance their brand’s reputation. Although your business might not be generating as much feedback as Tiger King (yet!), it’s still advantageous to keep your ear to the ground and act on the information you gather with effective ads, PR outreach, and content. Doing this will give your customers a sense of comfort during these times and your business a leg up on the competition.


Both customer loyalty and your online reputation will heavily influence customers’ decisions about which businesses to continue to support in these rapidly changing times. Existing customers are much easier to expect business from (with a 60-70% probability of conversion, as opposed to new prospects which has a 5 - 20% probability), so it’s important to keep them satisfied by both paying attention to and acting on their feedback.


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