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The coronavirus pandemic has seen unprecedented numbers of people working from home. People all over the world are self-quarantining at home and practicing social distancing in order to slow the spread of the disease. Humans are social creatures, however. 

Even though during the quarantine, people can’t socialize with anyone they don’t live with, except from a distance, they find a way to stay in touch. There are stories online about Italians playing music together from their balconies and people visiting each other through windows. People will find a way to stay in touch. 

But fortunately, there’s an easier way to keep in touch than that: social media. Social media already plays a large role in online marketing. But how has COVID-19 changed that? How has the coronavirus changed how people are using social media?


COVID-19 Updates

A major use of social media has been to get the latest COVID-19 news. While the CDC and the WHO are releasing updates on their websites, for many, it’s a lot easier to keep track of updates on social media. Facebook has taken charge of this and has created a special COVID-19 update tab so people can easily access the latest news about the virus. This also helps prevent the spread of misinformation online. But checking for updates is not the only way people are using social media.


Increased Screen Time

People have been spending more and more time on computers and mobile devices since the pandemic started. For many, it’s their lifeline to friends, family, and even to work. With so many people working remotely, the Internet has become the glue that keeps everything running smoothly.


Increased Social Media Usage

But people aren’t just using their phones more for work. They’re also watching more videos and spending more time on social media. Social media is a way for people to keep in touch with each other, to seek out news, and to entertain themselves during the pandemic. But what does this mean for businesses?


Increased Engagement

Due to the quarantine, many companies in industries that aren’t considered essential have had to scale back their social media posting out of necessity. A lot of industries, including retail, travel, and sports, have been negatively affected by the pandemic and are facing temporary shutdowns and a decreased budget. However, it’s important to maintain as much of a social media presence as possible to take advantage of the increased time people are spending on social media.

While companies that are posting less frequently may see an overall decrease in post engagement, companies that are able to maintain or increase their social media posting may see an increase. This is especially true for companies in the health and entertainment industries. Each post could see up to 7 more engagements than normal.

Creating Connections

With everyone farther apart than normal, this is an opportunity for social media to help people come together. Its original intention was to create a space online where people could keep in touch and communicate. That’s what people need more than ever now. Companies and people alike can use social media to help everyone get through this trying time as best as we can.