Everything brands thought they knew before COVID-19, they may have to relearn. Now more than ever, companies need meaningful communication with their clients.
- Communication with customers is critical during the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Businesses must brace for the next normal if they want to remain relevant.
- Brands should look for ways to make communication meaningful through video.
- Not all video platforms are created equal, nor do they serve the same purposes.
This article was featured on ClickZ on May 26, 2020.
Coronavirus has changed the lives of everyone forever. What businesses thought they knew before the epidemic – and what they need to know now – has changed.
In the coming weeks and months, parts of the world are slowly opening back up. However, this doesn’t signal a start to business as usual. People are nervous, cautious, and still uncertain about what the future holds.
The unprecedented shock of what the world has experienced has created an impact that will forever change it. And there is no going back.
Spending patterns are different, priorities have shifted, and the need for meaningful communication is more critical than ever. Companies who want to remain relevant tomorrow should be talking to their clients today.
Why communication is key right now?
To stay ahead of the curve, it’s time to create meaningful conversations with clients. People are at home. And they are evaluating everything – from the way they work to their interactions with the world.
Priorities have shifted, and they will continue to do so for the unforeseen future.
Brands must understand these shifts and anticipate their clients’ needs and desires moving forward. The lens of the future is still cloudy, but those who wait until the vision is clear will be left behind.
Now is the opportunity to engage with customers – to show them you care and offer genuine support during this time. Research shows that 64% of customers purposefully choose socially responsible brands – and that number is growing.
Companies that connect and build trust with their clients today can get a pulse on what they’re thinking now and moving forward. This allows them to shift along with their customer base, even if it requires relearning because life isn’t going back to the way it was.
The future will be different
As the world gradually begins to reopen, there’s still an eerie feeling across the globe. At the time of this article, there are over 3 million confirmed cases of coronavirus worldwide. And many have lost people they care about.
There’s no denying it’s never going to be the same. Supply chains are shifting, consumers are turning to online stores and services more, and people across the globe are reevaluating the way they live, spend, and work.
The World Economic Forum cites resilience and agility as key drivers for businesses to succeed in a post-pandemic world. McKinsey and Company also says that resilience is a vital necessity moving forward, and it points out that:
“Opportunities to push the envelope of technology adoption will be accelerated by rapid learning about what it takes to drive productivity when labor is unavailable. The result: a stronger sense of what makes business more resilient to shocks, more productive, and better able to deliver to customers.”
But in order to bounce back, seize future opportunities, and serve customers well, companies need a clear understanding of how their perspectives have changed. Communication is essential to success in a post-coronavirus world.
Communication must be meaningful
There’s a difference between communication and a meaningful conversation. Emails, online chats, and social media may offer some insights, but video has become the most powerful way to connect.
With video, there’s more to the communication than just words. Video offers insights into body language, voice inflection, and facial expressions, and it allows businesses to establish a real presence and connection with the clients they serve.
Video conversations build trust, strengthen relationships, and provide extremely valuable insights – if they are well-structured and smart. A smart conversation starts with the understanding that customers are more complex than the typical customer journey implies.
It deepens the connection between a brand and its customers. And it goes beyond identifying what, where, and how to uncover clues that lead to the “why.”
The “why” is changing for many people in a post-COVID-19 world, and meaningful video communication today will help brands respond with relevance now and in the future.
Not all video tools are equal
With social-distancing and stay at home orders still in effect across much of the world, people are already turning to video chat tools for everything from digital cocktail parties to medical consultations. However, not all video tools are designed for the same purposes – nor are they always effective.
Virtual happy hours need a platform for members to see each other in Brady Bunch-like fashion while they laugh and sip their latest COVID concoctions. A simple video connection allowing them to enjoy each other is all that’s required here.
Companies that want to have conversations that matter with their clients need something more robust than that.
Yes, a connection is the first step to remaining relevant in the next normal,but to get ahead of the curve, and possibly even influence it, companies must be able to turn these conversations into valuable insights that drive business decisions moving forward.
The meeting room of the future is one that not only enables you to connect with anyone, anywhere in the world- it allows you to create meaningful conversations that are secure, structured, and inform strategic business decisions.
In this future meeting room, companies will go beyond just capturing conversations to analyzing them and creating intelligence at scale. They will highlight key points, categorize and transcribe information, and virtually share it with other team members anywhere – and in different languages.
Businesses who look past the basic platforms to an enterprise-level smart video platform can hold meaningful and structured conversations that produce a level of business intelligence that does not yet exist within current enterprise video conferencing tools.
The first step is to stay close to customers today so that you remain relevant to them tomorrow. Those businesses who are early to adopt a smart video platform will be the ones that gain an advantage here and in the post COVID-19 world. Will you be one of them?
Simon Glass is the Chief Executive Officer of Discuss.io, the only enterprise-level smart video platform helping business professionals make better decisions, using smart technology to capture conversations, analyze them and create intelligence at scale. At Discuss.io, Glass is responsible for overseeing all facets of the business and driving the company’s global development strategy. He first joined Discuss.io in 2019 as Chief Revenue Officer where he successfully transformed the company’s business model and rebuilt the sales and marketing teams.