Resources Worthy of Marketing and Comms Eyes During These Wild Times
May 21, 2020
 

Whew. What a strange past two months it’s been. 

When I think about how the coronavirus pandemic changed everything seemingly overnight, I flash back to views of Boston as my plane approached Logan after an amazing time in Philly with Metis Communications President Cathy Atkins and our client O3 World. It was bittersweet, because as we landed, I had the feeling it would be awhile before I’d be able to travel and see team members and clients in-person. What I didn’t expect was the tumultuous events and constant changes that would follow. 

For all the content creators, communicators, marketers and media relations professionals around the world, there’s no denying the fact that our jobs are different today. And, with the move to a more digital world, our jobs have also become more important than ever before. 

The good news: We have a lot of resources at our fingertips. The bad news: We have way too much content at our fingertips. 

It’s challenging to sort through the information deluge and understand what is worth your time. I bet I’m not alone when I write that I’m fatigued by the amount of “How to [insert something here] during the pandemic,” article and over use of words like “unprecedented.” 

I’ve compiled some of the most valuable resources and articles my team and I have found helpful as we - along with our clients and partners - navigate these uncharted waters (even if it sometimes feels like we all have a blindfold on). My hope is you’ll find these helpful too. 

Resources for writing and communicating: 

  1. Still figuring out how you’re supposed to start an email during all this? You’re not alone. Thankfully, WIRED reporter Lauren Goode felt this awkwardness early on and provided solid tips in this article on emailing through a time of pandemic that every working pro should read. 

  2. How do you stay close to co-workers when you work from home? According to Katherine Ellen Foley, Quartz’s health and science writer, intentional communication to help build bonds is important.  Read her piece here.

  3. We’re big fans of pioneering digital marketer, writer and speaker Ann Handley - I have her website bookmarked and her bi-weekly newsletter is one I gladly welcome in my inbox. Her post on writing for an anxious world has a fantastic writing prompt with a framework that I strongly recommend all content creators and marketers check out. 

Resources for remote work: 

  1. Our client Basecamp is no stranger to remote work -- they literally wrote the book on it. So, when everyone except for essential workers were suddenly remote, Basecamp created a remote work resource page. On it, you’ll find recorded live streams, educational guides, how-to videos and posts that explore the lighter side of working from home.
  2. To all the parents out there: Solidarity. As a mom of a toddler who is used to having childcare Monday through Friday, I was suddenly without it and juggling to find the right balance with work. I told this to Heather Landy, editor-in-chief at Quartz at Work, in passing, and she immediately sent me the Quartz at Work section dedicated to parenting in the age of COVID-19. The articles have been lifesavers for me. So, Heather, if you’re reading this, I owe you a glass of wine. 
  3. New to managing a remote team? Metis friend Claire Lew, CEO of Know Your Team, recently did a live workshop on how to manage a remote team well. It covers best practices on communication, collaboration and performance management in remote teams, based on data collected over the past six years working with 15,000+ people. 

Resources for virtual conferences: 

  1. We all know online tools and experiences are a critical part of a marketer’s day-to-day role. But one aspect of business that (until recently) hasn’t been used as much are virtual and online conferences. HubSpot’s blog on how to run a successful virtual event includes tips and options for virtual conferencing tools and examples of virtual events for marketers.  
  2. With more events going virtual, LinkedIn just unveiled it’s merging its live-streaming and event tools for virtual events. This will enable the full broadcast of your virtual functions directly on the platform. SocialMediaToday has more on the latest news announcement, and I look forward to seeing how it plays out, and potentially using the tool as a source for clients’ streaming events.
  3. Selling complex technology in these times is particularly difficult, especially when face-to-face opportunities at trade shows have dried up. Early on, or client CloudShare weighed in with this timely blog, “The show must go on: How physical events are moving into a virtual realm.”

Resources for marketing: 

  1. Our marketing communications manager Kim Caro must have been on the same wavelength as me about the pandemic fatigue - she recently wrote a piece on how to execute a responsible marketing strategy and bring value to your audience.
  2. Marketing during a crisis is tough. That’s why we appreciate this blog post from Lynne Capozzi, CMO of our Boston neighbors Acquia, which addresses what marketers should be doing  during this time to better understand what customers need. 

Resources for social media: 

  1. Social media is a critical communication tool. Our team found Buffer’s resources blog a helpful starting point to work from as we navigate current and up-coming challenges.
  2. In the past few months, people have used social media to reach out, help others and create meaningful relationships during this time of uncertainty. But how can brands authentically facilitate this connection? This blog from Sprout Social offers a handful of recommendations on how brands can create a connection by staying relevant. 

Did you find a valuable resource that’s not included in the above? We want to know! Comment below. 

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