Employer Branding: How to Improve and Leave a Mark During COVID-19
What makes a brand? One is consistency. Consistent efforts earn brands loyalty.
Therefore, during these tough times of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is important to continue your efforts towards employer branding, which describes an employer's reputation as opposed to the more general corporate brand reputation, and improve your employer branding strategy to promote your company as the employer of choice to your target group.
To underpin trust in your brand, you must focus on the well-being of your customers as well as the employees. Moreover, it helps if you refrain from maximizing profit by taking advantage of the global health crisis situation with COVID-19.
While these are some basic things you can do, you can further improve your employer branding efforts with the help of these three fundamental tips:
1. Be Resilient and Keep Moving Forward
When a crisis hits, you can’t back down and sit idly and wait for everything to become normal again. You must continue moving forward, even if it is at a slow pace. So, be resilient and take actions that are in the best interest of your employees and your community.
Leverage new technology to adapt and work in the new ways that the pandemic necessitates. Begin with enabling your employees to work remotely. Assure them that your top priority is their health and well-being.
Also. leverage social media to keep the morale of your employees high in these testing times. For example, you can ask your employees to upload their selfies with their makeshift home offices or post a screenshot of a zoom call just to boost their morale. Small activities like these will also increase the sense of connectedness in employees, which is currently of higher importance.
If you’re offering your employees technical training or work-management training, share it with your social media members and followers. If you’re thinking of your employees’ convenience or growth during these tough times, it is a commendable effort you are doing as an employer, and others should know about it too.
2. Maintain Connections
As employees are working from home, and many have been laid off, social media consumption has increased. Unemployed people are looking for jobs on various social media and job portals. And more than a million users, according to Facebook, have joined COVID-related support groups. Therefore, this may not be the best time to stay quiet and dissolve in the background. This is the time that you can prove to be more resilient and limit any damage to your brand and reputation.
Other companies may completely give up on employer branding, thinking that it’s of no use at this time. But these companies are likely to end up being the losers tomorrow’s in terms of their reputation in the labor market.
Create a plan accordingly. Instead of marketing yourself, talk about the crisis that people across the world are going through and especially in your local community. This is the kind of message that people will relate to most during trying times like we are currently experiencing.
As you can now tell, all is not lost. You can still stay top of mind and also achieve new levels of employer brand during this period because your audience may finally may have more time to absorb relevant information from you than ever.
If you’re just venturing into employer branding, investing in digital marketing will also be a great boon to help you expand your reach and magnify your connections and reputation.
3. Re-assess Your Strategy
During the COVID-19 pandemic, two very important aspects of your employer brand you should take care of are tone and appropriateness. As a brand that cares for its employees and society, you must leverage your presence to spread positivity.
So, you might need to change your employer branding strategy to reflect that need. Instead of talking about ‘you,’ talk about ‘them.’ For example, you can spread awareness about preventive measures to slow the spread of the virus. This is the kind of content people seel amd will relate more to.
If you have been hit badly by the pandemic, it’s alright to stay silent for a while as you strategize an effective response and brand messaging. In any case, make sure that you don’t appear tone-deaf or rush into it and make may come across as insensitive or inappropriate comments.
Here are a few other things you can do in this step:
- Increase the frequency of humorous or light-hearted posts on your social media channel only when you are sure they cannot be misinterpreted as inappropriate.
- Post Q&As and organize podcasts to make people stay connected and informed.
- Showcase what you’re doing as a company to support your employees and customers.
- Refrain from photos, videos, or advertisements that focus solely on sales or profit alone.
Remember, this is not the time to carry on with business as usual; it’s the time to be more empathetic and supportive of your team.