News, Inside Our Company, Corona COVID-19 virus • 9 min read

How to be relevant in crisis time?

Katrien Klein April 6, 2020

The corona crisis is shaking up our personal and professional lives. Some of us are in critical professions, working day and night to fight the virus. And some of us are a little bit further away from the frontline, trying to adapt to the new normal. We are curious: how do you keep up relevant communication with your network? We find ourselves asking these questions: what is the right (or wrong) timing? Should we wait, or should we share our personal experiences because we believe we have valuable insights to share? And what if we do - will it still be relevant tomorrow? To be honest: there is no perfect answer nor approach. However, we have found a way that feels right to us, which we like to share with you.

How do we adapt relevance in our communication? It’s not easy

Our company started a couple of months ago with content development from an “inbound” perspective, where relevance for our end users is the main important driver.  The current situation has only strengthened this focus even more. We have adapted our communication strategy, current campaigns and marketing automation and instead of planning months ahead, we brainstorm on a weekly and sometimes even daily basis to determine where we can really add value.

We generate input from current questions we receive via our end user experts, our customer service or via our online channels. We use that input to create relevant content, mainly through blogs. If we can’t really make that difference, we prefer to wait with communication instead of publishing noise.

So how do we stay relevant?

To figure that out, we decided to fire this very question to our colleagues. As we always do with new topics that affect our end users, we asked our own experts: how do you stay relevant in these uncertain times? This has given us some new and refreshing insights.

Ewa GawrysiakEwa Gawrysiak (Poland) says: “The well-being and safety of our clients and colleagues is our top priority. Keeping in touch is the best way to show how important these people are to us.”

Mathias MöllerMathias Möller (The Netherlands) adds: “I try to be as present as possible. Although working the regular 8 hours a day is impossible right now - my wife works in the healthcare business and we are home schooling our kids - I do reserve time to answer emails and share information where possible. Being locked up doesn’t mean there is nothing I can do to support others.”

Antonio de León TorresFor Antonio de León Torres (Spain), the relevant thing to do was to isolate himself from his family and home, as he has been travelling recently. Antonio: “I feel like being relevant today is for everyone to stay safe and healthy and do all you can by staying at home and abiding the rules. I also try to stay relevant to my customers and acquaintances by checking up on them, ensuring they have all they need from us and that they know we are there for them.”

Steve SkinnerSteve Skinner (UK) highlights the possibility to utilize technology and stay connected across the board: “Relevance has a greater meaning than ever in the current circumstances; staying connected with peers; customers and family.”

collage5How the practical site of being relevant to our families, customers and colleagues looks like today

Are we talking about customers, colleagues or family?

What stood out was that although each experience is unique, everyone mentions their colleagues, family and customers in one breath. There seemed to be no distinction whatsoever between how they would listen to the needs of their close relatives, or that of their professional relations. In our opinion that is the only approach to being truly relevant. Because why would we communicate differently with our customers, than we would with the people that are closest to us in our personal lives?

If you truly pause for a moment and take the time to listen what your customers are telling you, unique connections will be made. Even in crisis time.

Guillaume BonnetGuillaume Bonnet (France) puts it into words: “How is everyone feeling personally, and how do they live through this situation? I try to share my perception of this crisis, its future and the consequences.” And in our opinion - that is pretty much as relevant as you can get.

We will do everything in our power to be relevant for you in crisis time, please feel free to contact us if you have specific questions.

Picture of Katrien Klein

Katrien Klein

Marketing & Communication Manager | TenCate Protective Fabrics