The whole world is going through a particularly trying time right now. People are stuck at home, family members feel isolated, physical and mental health problems abound, and economic stability seems fragile. With 56% of people reporting that they struggle to stay positive day to day, and 58% saying they struggle to look to the future, it’s clear that much of life seems gloomy and uncertain.
However, your business is uniquely positioned to shine light into the lives of a despairing people. You already have an audience, and that audience needs its spirits raised. Whether it’s through social media or email or some other media, you have the opportunity to offer joy and hope to people who are being bombarded with the opposite.
WHY FOCUS ON POSITIVITY MARKETING?
Your primary corporate focus should always be, “How can we help our customers?” Usually, your business does that by providing an excellent product or service and by helping clients get what they need. Recently, however, for a variety of reasons, businesses might not be purchasing, might not be attending trade shows, might be freezing their budgets. So NOW what is your focus? It’s still the same: “How can we help our customers?” One huge way to help right now is to be a beacon of light, to offer hope in a time of seemingly little hope, to offer joy in a dreary day.
HOW HELPFUL IS POSITIVITY?
More than just a friendly shot in the arm, positivity is scientifically proven to tremendously help people. Research at Johns Hopkins shows that it increases life span, enhances quality of life, decreases life-threatening illnesses, and improves odds against brain injury, stroke, and tumors. And the fact that stress is the number one cause of these conditions means that there’s never been a better time for a prescription of positivity! Positivity drastically affects mental health, as well, and mental health risks are currently at an all-time high.
HOW CAN MY BUSINESS SPREAD POSITIVITY?
- Share how your company is giving. Let your customers know that your business is in the business of helping people and share stories of how you’ve done that. If you make a social media post, you can ask for THEIR input on favorite ways to give and organizations to help.
- Let your customers know you’re not going anywhere. Encourage them with your steadfastness. Keep them up-to-date on what changes you’re making in business hours or shipping speeds. They want to know if they can still depend on you.
- In a time when it’s difficult to support many of the businesses we love, reviews are an easy thing to do that make a big impact on businesses. Encourage your followers to leave positive reviews for their favorite shops and businesses and explain to them how much of an effect that they can have by doing that. People love feeling like they can make a positive impact, no matter how big or small.
- Ask your social media audience open-ended questions occasionally to get them talking and sharing. “What made you smile today?” “What gave you hope today?” “What’s something fun you did this week?”
- Share happy photos and ask your social audience to share back. You can use the photos on your own social platforms, ask them to use your hashtag for more exposure, or even enter all the participants in a drawing for a prize from your company.
- Share videos – via social media or email – that give you some face time with the people you’re trying to reach. Instead of positioning yourself in your office, go outside or to a cheerful environment. Go live on social for real time interaction.
- Share helpful tips for maintaining health and happiness during this time: how to drink more water, how to get your daily step count in, how to get more sleep, etc.
- Give your audience ideas about getting outside and moving around and getting some Vitamin D to bolster their mental and physical health. Avoid mentioning “safety” or “masks” or “distancing” or any words that might strike doubt or fear. Simply stick to positive suggestions: “Create an outdoor workspace!” “Enjoy coffee on your back porch!” “Wake up and watch the sun rise!”
- Offer an inspiring or positive Spotify playlist for your audience. You can also ask for suggestions and recommendations. Music is a powerful force – it can uplift spirits and boost mood, and almost everyone loves it.
- Inspire your audience with some great tips about working remotely. For example, encourage them to make a short phone call periodically throughout the day to scratch the “gathering at the watercooler” itch they might have. Encourage them to walk to the mailbox and back so they have a chance to stretch and move. One friend I know, who previously rode the bus to and from work, still gets up and gets dressed and walks to and from the bus stop, as if she’s taking it to work. She insists it helps her with her routine and her frame of mind. Great idea!
- Offer a giveaway! This gives people something to look forward to and spreads a little positivity while growing awareness of your brand. Businesses conducting giveaways often ask their audience to tag friends in the comments and follow their page, resulting in more followers for you as more and more people are tagged and want to enter!
- Use the power of “daily habit” to your advantage and regularly send/post a joke or cartoon or meditation or short inspiration or funny animal video to your audience. This little 30 second break makes a big difference in someone’s day.
- Share positive updates about your employees/team. Share to your Instagram, Facebook, or Snapchat stories how they’re finding ways to stay busy and be productive from home. Let them be the ones to speak on camera and walk through their day so your audience can relate to a face rather than just reading about it in a post.
- Depending on the type of business you have, you can share a DIY project with materials you sell and a start-to-finish “how to” video.
- Again, depending on the type of business you have, you can offer happy suggestions about using your products. An essential oils company can share the benefits of certain oils in promoting happiness and relaxation. A home and garden company can recommend birdfeeders that attract certain birds or plants that attract butterflies or promote better health. A bedding store can promote their lavender-infused pillows and softest sheets.
Positive marketing is not just blue sky thinking. It’s using your influential voice as a force for good. Finding smalls ways each day to deposit some hope and joy into people’s lives helps you feel good, too. And it goes a long way for your brand and your business.
This article was inspired by "16 Ways for Your Business to Continue Spreading Positivity" by Briquelle Neyens and first appeared at skyline.com