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Eight Tips for Communicating During a Crisis

Updated: May 4, 2023

The “coronacoaster” meme resonates with Carbonites, because like many of our clients, partners and associates, we’re on an emotional rollercoaster ride. In addition to the COVID-19 pandemic and an economic recession, we’re wrestling with racial injustice and social unrest. Almost weekly, there’s a natural disaster looming, including wildfires, derecho, and hurricanes.

We wonder, will we all look back on 2020 like a bad dystopian novel? As business leaders, we can flip the script. We can use this time to reimagine the future and reinvent how we can offer products, services and solutions that our customers need now and in the future.

Facing multiple crises can actually be a positive turning point for your business. Here’s a checklist of eight of our top tips for using the “next normal” to catapult your business to the next level.

1) Research remains relevant

Since March, consumers and B2B decision-makers have been forced to adjust and make rapid changes. Most organizations and key industries have accelerated their digital transformations. We are now embracing eCommerce, curbside pickup and contactless transactions, as well as remote work and socially-distanced collaborations.

What are the new essentials for your customers in order to live and work today? What are their fears, desires and psychological outlooks?

Tapping into research can uncover opportunities to adjust your current offerings. General Motors retrofitted an auto plant to build critical-care ventilators. Breweries and distilleries began making hand sanitizers. Your business can pivot, too.

Could you find a partner with a complementary product or service to create a bundled offering? For example, Panera Bread began selling milk, bread and eggs directly to consumers. Texas Roadhouse offered a variety of meats at prices comparable to grocery stores.

We took this to heart here at Carbon by expanding our internal research capabilities to help clients address current circumstances and challenges, while identifying their customers’ unmet needs. From primary and secondary research to focus groups and cost-effective online surveys, our team can support you in understanding your target audiences’ mindset, purchase motivations and new buying behaviors.

2) Rather than cancel in-person meetings, create interactive virtual events.

3) Convert frequently asked questions and instructions into infographics

4) Enhance client relationships and customer service by employing help desk tactics.

5) Continue content marketing

6) Social media consumption has increased since the start of the pandemic according to the Harris Poll.

7) Harness public relations to build brand awareness

8) A crisis communications plan is imperative in our new reality with emergencies and situations unraveling in rapid-fire succession.


Your response during crises can set you apart if you convey empathy and a willingness to be part of the solution. Need help getting ready for what’s next? We’re here to support you with crisis communications planning, research, marketing and PR strategies! Send an email for a complimentary communications audit.



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