Addressing Tragic Current Events in Your Marketing
For what feels like the 417th time in recent memory, digital creators are feeling the pressure to show up for their audience while also processing devastating global events in real-time.
Should you post as usual?
Not post at all?
Talk about what’s happening?
Pretend everything’s normal?
Is it wrong to post about tragedies alongside a perfectly filtered pic of yesterday’s boba tea or your interpretation of the latest Reels trend?
To put it simply, no, it’s not.
Is that really what social media’s for though?
Don’t make the mistake of brushing social media off as superficial. Are there superficial aspects to it? Of course.
But people run entire businesses on social media. Dedicate careers to it. Form friendships across it. Learn and grow because of it. And most people spend at least some part of their day interacting with it. That’s not superficial.
Despite white supremacy and exploitative practices being a feature, not a bug, of social media’s most popular platforms, it’s also been used effectively as a tool of resistance. Social media has allowed historically marginalized voices to reach further and offered a more accessible path to connection and community.
So, if you’re wondering if your business’s social media profiles are an appropriate place to talk about your beliefs and values, my answer will always be an emphatic YES.
Which means, even when new issues are emerging and your position on things may not feel solid, you can (and likely should) say something.
But I’m worried I’ll say the wrong thing…
Sure, you should be thoughtful when discussing sensitive topics.
But don’t let that stop you from saying something altogether.
Unfortunately, that’s where I think a lot of digital creators get stuck. They’re used to showcasing the brightest, shiniest aspects of themselves on social media. Sharing something that doesn’t fit that mold feels uncomfortable or even unsafe.
And, for those who get it wrong, the internet can be an unforgiving place. Sometimes rightfully so, sometimes not. Either way, speaking out on social media, especially if you haven’t done it before, can feel like a risk. But it’s one that, in my opinion, is worth taking.
So, while I don’t profess to be an expert on the subject, I’ve developed my own guidelines for approaching this particular challenge as a hyper-compassionate business owner and thought I’d share them with you.
Will some people disagree with me? Of course.
There are always going to be people out there that think you should’ve done more (or less). That’s just reality. If I’ve learned anything in my years in branding it’s that you can’t please everyone, nor should you try!
I’m the type of person who’s always working to learn and grow and do better. And that’s all I can do.
Here’s what that looks like for me right now:
Okay, I think I can do all that…
Of course you can. And guess what? It gets easier the more you do it. Now go post!