Crafting the Right Message? How Social Media Strategy Has Changed in 2020

​Posts on social media for the most part are promoting your products and your brand, but now key information that’s vital to let consumers know what is going on due to pandemic concerns is just as important.

That’s a big shift for breweries that may have been able to use social media to promote, but now it’s to boost sales, even more, especially promoting online stores or new ways a taproom release may be put out.​

​Although Urban Artifact hasn’t changed anything in regards to usage levels, ​the brewery has modified ​its messaging.

​”​We are trying to strike a balance of promoting our online store but not so much that we make our retail customers angry​,” explained Head of Brewing Operations, Bret Kollmann Baker​. ​”​It is a weird time and we are all struggling, so if we are looking more biased than accounts feel comfortable with, then that is a problem.​”​

​Ozark Beer limit​s posting for a few reasons ​said Marketing Director Marty Shutter. And that has remained fairly steady during the pandemic.

​”​We don’t have a large traditional marketing budget, so when we need to get information out quickly about a new product or policy change or event​, etc., ​[and] ​we find it is more powerful to post to a social media stream that is not already jammed with messages that may be out of sync with the overall strategy​,” he pointed out.​ “This tends to work for us, and it may seem counterintuitive as people are spending more time on social media… but that only means the quality and relevance of the posts must be as high as possible to stand out in such a cluttered stream.​”

​Stable Craft does ​use​ social media to communicate ​its COVID protocols which can help manage guest expectations prior to arrival​, explained owner Craig Nargi​. ​The brewery also maintain​s​ a COVID page on ​its website and direct social media to this page for more details.

​Reserving posts without staying quiet for too long has proven useful​ for Ozark.

​”We have however increased our newsletter some, and that has been quite successful​,” Shutter added.​ “We use it to wrap up a couple weeks of news and to tease out the next week or two of happenings, releases ​and such.​”

Shutter said they purposely write in a relaxed tone and often drop bigger news in the newsletter a day or so before it may hit social media.

​”​We’ve found that doing so has attracted more people to the newsletter which makes our other messaging and sales goals slightly easier to accomplish​,” he said.​

​And oversaturating the pandemic message isn’t always necessary, added Baker.​

​”​Stay on brand,” he said. “Don’t talk about COVID unless you’re talking about the rules and regulations at your taproom. Avoid any of the bullshit ‘in these trying times’ language. We all know it sucks right now, you don’t need to keep reminding people.

“They don’t want to hear it, and it doesn’t sound sincere if you keep saying it. This is life now, so just stick with your normal brand voice and positioning.”

​Across ​its social channels, ​Ozark’s message tends to be unified.

​”​Once we have a goal, we develop a strategy​,” Shutter said. ​”​Once we have the strategy, the communication and execution of that strategy must be as sleek and concise as possible so there is less confusion and greater adoption of the message.”​

There are often multiple goals with some strategy overlap​, he added​.

​”​It’s important to keep the big picture top of mind when messaging as you will often find creative ways to blend the messages and maximize your communication’s effect​,” Shutter said.​

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