How do you engage and stay connected with your stakeholders during this new and altered normal?
Covid-19 with its “uninvited guest” status did not discriminate in its path of devastation, which brought with it the absence of public gatherings and strict protocols, regarding the number of people to convene at meeting venues and companies having to find alternative engagement measures. This “new normal” has paved the way for virtual seminars, workshops and events to ensure that communication and engagement with stakeholders remains active. Virtual engagement transition has been seamless with the digital early adopters leading the way.
How effective have some of these virtual sessions been? How have stakeholders engaged with their community members, as not all community members are e-enabled or have access to digital platforms? This poses a challenge for companies to ensure regular and sustained engagement with all its stakeholders as outlined.
The globe recently had to deal with the emergence of the second wave of the pandemic, which has triggered the reintroduction of stringent lockdown regulations. Venue engagement sessions will not be possible for the next few months which will unfortunately lead to more people being excluded from digital stakeholder sessions.
The migration to digital platforms will still be effective, with non-standardised experience levels. Once again, the sophistication of the digital equipment will dictate the user and stakeholder experience.
These digital platforms have allowed companies to have more frequent engagement sessions with their staff and clients. These platforms also have real-time measurement and tracking tools to provide feedback and insights on the effectiveness of the planned sessions.
The strategic design of these sessions will deliver better results against stated objectives, enhanced participation and increase the levels of togetherness. Instead of regional sessions, you are now able to reach more people nationally with these digital solutions. The absence of physical bodies will be offset against the greater benefits derived from digital stakeholder engagement sessions. This also provides savings on refreshments, gifting, branding, transportation and activation of these events. More needs to be done to ensure all stakeholders are included and part of the digital revolution to ensure inclusion and participation.