Businesses are now having to navigate the unfamiliar waters of the unfolding COVID-19 situation.

Here at Rose Media Group we are passionate about communications. And times of crisis, communication is important above all else.

To play our part, we’re offering FIVE TOP TIPS to business owners and managers to help you to put in place a communications response to COVID-19, internally and externally.

  1. Communicate swiftly and promptly
  • Your employees, stakeholders, partners, suppliers and clients will be expecting to hear from you. Work out who needs to know what information and when.
  • If you haven’t already, consider drafting an official statement to discuss how your business will be reacting to the crisis.
  • Make your statement available on your website and across your marketing channels and social media. Make use of the ‘pinned post’ capability to ensure that your communication stays top of the radar.

2. Get your messaging on point

Your statement should cover basic points, including:

  • Your business continuity plans
  • Travel and remote working policies
  • What measures you are taking to ensure the health and wellbeing of your employees and clients, e.g. reduced in-person meetings and social distancing
  • Events cancellations / reschedules
  • Contact details for the relevant staff members within your organisation who can direct enquiries appropriately. If you anticipate having to talk to the media, brief your spokesperson so that they are prepared with key messages. Be brief and to the point.

3. Keep communication calm and friendly

No need to panic. Your tone of voice should reflect the fact that you are taking COVID-19 seriously, but without provoking undue worry. Keep your communication open, friendly and positive.

4. Be transparent

The times we now find ourselves in are unprecedented.  Ensure that your communication reflects as honestly as possible the information you have to hand. It’s OK not to have all of the answers and it’s OK to hold your hands up and admit that. If you are asked a question that you can’t respond to immediately, don’t try to guess. Instead reply “we will look into this and get back to you as soon as possible.”

5. Be prepared to pivot

In the current situation, developments are happening on a minute by minute basis. It is therefore important to stay abreast of the current developments and amend any messaging in real time. Social media is a great way to stay up to the minute and relevant, posting timely updates in response to the broader situation.

With so much press attention and speculation flying around, it’s important you refer to the correct resources, the links below are the most up to date and correct:

World Health Organisationhttps://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019

NHShttps://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/

UK Governmenthttps://www.gov.uk/government/topical-events/coronavirus-covid-19-uk-government-response