A recent report by LinkedIn shows increased engagement from users on coronavirus related content, which is a massive change in engagement trends across a three-month period. The report draws its insights and user statistics from January, February and March 2020.

Trending hashtags and content on LinkedIn from January to the end of March point to the fact that people on the network are more interested in posts about Covid-19 and that organisations included this in their content strategies. The platform saw conversations around #coronavirus grow seven-fold since February alongside other hashtags related to prevention and safety. In March, however, #coronavirus and #covid19 took the lead surpassing some longstanding popular hashtags.

Source: LinkedIn report – Navigating the evolving world of work during COVID-19
Source: LinkedIn report – Navigating the evolving world of work during COVID-19

With people spending time at home due to restrictions and lockdowns, social media platforms have seen increased usage. According to research, South Africans have increased their media consumption with news media leading by 38% in comparison to the worldwide average of 36%. Responding to a survey about their change in social media usage due to the novel coronavirus outbreak, South African respondents showed a 28% increase which is higher than the 21% worldwide average. These findings by GlobalWebIndex shed more light into the growth that LinkedIn and other platforms have seen during the Covid-19 pandemic.

In the LinkedIn report, companies in the IT and financial services sector are the ones driving the most coronavirus related conversations followed by the marketing and advertising industry. Hospitals and healthcare, as well as non-profits also feature prominently among leading sectors with the highest prevalence of Covid-19 conversations on the social network.

Source: LinkedIn report – Top ten companies discussing coronavirus

Businesses that retained their relevance on social media and other platforms during the Covid-19 pandemic have shown empathy and placed humanity ahead of a business-as-usual approach. This is set to continue as the world battles to curb the pandemic and some organisations will struggle to remain top of mind.

Brand content during this time should prioritise how people are dealing with challenges surrounding the pandemic and how brands can be part of the solution. Social media is showing that people are engaged as most work from home and interact with their favourite brand pages. This may be an opportunity for brands to interact better with their community while generating content that increases their relevance in people’s lives.