With so many business and personal challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s easy to forget three things:
First, your clients are looking for help and advice as they confront the same challenges you and your firm are coping with today.
Second, search engine spiders continue to crawl your website looking for new content and assigning rankings.
Third, as hard as it may be to imagine today, the pandemic will end and business will resume. Clients and prospects will remember those who were helpful to them.
It’s not easy to focus on blogs and adding new webpages when you’re working in your home with bored kids wanting attention, maybe a dog running around the house who also wants you to play or the cat deciding your keyboard is the perfect place to walk across, and when just going to the store for food can be a daunting task.
But remaining pertinent and valuable to your clients is more important now than ever.
Keeping Blogs and Content Relevant
It’s possible to be relevant and to provide useful information while still reminding readers of your areas of expertise. Here are a few examples of how we’ve helped clients do both.
- For a law firm focusing criminal law, we wrote a series of blogs tied to topics including how the courts are (not) running during COVID-19, and other posts including some on “What if you defy the Governor’s order to stay at home?”
- For a family law firm, we wrote a blog on how to renegotiate child visitation schedules with COVID-19 still rampaging through the country.
- For a business in the solar energy system field, we wrote several blog posts reminding readers of how their installation was helping reduce demand on the grid with families all stuck at home using computers and charging devices, watching TV and cooking more meals. We also created a blog on “Minnesota is a Top 12 Solar State. Why That Matters During a Pandemic.”
- For our own company, starting on March 15th, just days after the global pandemic was announced, we decided to start publishing blogs to help our clients remain positive and productive while working from home. You can see our entire COVID-19 Marketing Toolkit here.
Each provides actionable information to help professionals and small business owners deal with issues in their lives while reminding readers that the resource has their best interests in mind.
Offer Ideas, Not Just Information – But Don’t Sell
What readers are desperate for now are ideas that will help their practice or business when many firms and companies are debilitated.
We run competitive analyses for our clients on an on-going basis and saw that a firm of patent attorneys posted a blog that was nothing but the modified hours of the patent office in Washington during the pandemic. How does that help a reader? Few companies or inventors’ files their own patent applications. Patent laws are complex and the requirements for a filing incredibly detailed, precise and specific. If every box is not properly ticked off, the submission will be returned. Only patent lawyers know how to file an application and follow-up with the USPTO so why was this firm providing hours of operation?
We have seen similar blogs and client e-mails that help nobody. They especially do not help the firm or business that posted the item or sent out the communication.
Nor does it help anybody when the blog, an email blasted out to the list or a new webpage is little more than a thinly-disguised “sales pitch.” In fact, this sort of content is tone deaf and insulting. Yes, people still are buying needed services but they are buying in a very different way than in the past and are looking for different things.
Write About What Readers Need Today
More than ever, people are looking to their suppliers – and those they may need tomorrow – for help, guidance and solid ideas for doing business during the pandemic.
It’s a cliché to say that COVID-19 has changed everything. What it hasn’t changed is the need to provide useful information to people. Blogs were always supposed to do this. Writing about what readers need to know in the context of the pandemic is more important than ever so that your content is not another victim of COVID-19.