April 14, 2020
Patricia Morris
The Popcorn team, four hours deep into strategic goodness. Popcorn Retreat 2020 | Gibsons, BC

In January, the Popcorn team went on a two-day retreat to the Sunshine Coast in Beautiful British Columbia. We packed our laptops, a flipchart and loads of goodies, and took some time away from Vancouver to work on our Q1 strategy. During the strategy session, we made a group decision to focus on ensuring we’re up to date with emerging trends, digital marketing news stories and platform updates.

We decided that we would each highlight an interesting article or news story, to share during our weekly team meeting. In this weekly blog feature, we’ll share our interesting findings with you.


Hutchinson, A. (2020, April 14). “Instagram Live Streams Can Now Be Viewed on the Web” – Social Media Today

  • In response to the quarantine prompted by the global Coronavirus outbreak, Instagram is making various updates and enhancements to the way users can interact with the platform’s desktop version. In addition to desktop access to direct messages, users are now able to view Instagram live streams on their computers.

Another perk of this feature is that Instagram now generates a URL for live-streams, meaning that users can cross-promote their streams, with a direct link.

Have you noticed an uptick in the number of Instagram live streams at the moment – if so, which streams do you recommend? Have you made use of the new capability and watched live streams from your laptop/desktop or do you use Instagram solely on your mobile device?

Crestodina, A. (2020, April 1) “The Coronavirus Impact on Marketing Agencies: 122 Agency Executives Report” – Orbit Media Studios

  • Orbit Media Studios conducted a survey about the effect of the Coronavirus on the state of business for Marketing Agencies. Of course, marketing is a very broad category, and this insightful report takes a deep dive into which areas of service took the most significant hit.

To summarise; B2B is faring better than B2C. Media planning and media buying has lowered ad spend at best, and dried up or been suspended at worst. It’s no shock to find that travel and events businesses are suffering due to business closures, lockdowns and worldwide campaigns urging people to Stay Home and Flatten the Curve. As a result of this (unsurprisingly) crisis management and the use of PR & Communications companies is trending upwards, as businesses scramble to transition their offerings online and keep customers engaged.

Does this ring true for you? Have you been thinking of working with a PR specialist to help you navigate this difficult time? We’re offering FREE 30-minute discovery calls and would love to discuss any comms challenges you might be facing right now.

We ❤️ SEO

Dod, R. (2020, April 9) “How SEO and PPC strategies can work together to drive business goals” – Search Engine Land

  • In this fascinating article, Ronald Dod explains how best to use Search Engine Optimization and Pay Per Click ad strategy to ensure your brand dominates page 1 of Google. Ranking highly on Search Engine Results Pages can be a difficult task and is often a slow-burn; but taking a synergistic approach to your SEO and PPC strategy can elevate the exposure your brand receives through search.
An example of some of the graphics that Facebook are offering.

Southern, M. (2020, April 14) “Facebook Templates for Business Posts About COVID-19 Changes” – Search Engine Journal

  • Facebook has stepped up and provided users with a catalogue of simple, easy-to-use templates, suitable for brands to post on social to keep their customers up to date with Covid-related news, updates and key business changes. This collection of graphics aims to lighten the load on business owners by helping brands remain well connected with their audiences during this difficult time. These graphics can be downloaded from: the Facebook Business Resource Hub.

Kapoor, N. (2020, April 14) “5 Digital Marketing Trends to Focus On During the COVID-19 Pandemic [Infographic].” Social Media Today

  • The world of digital marketing is fast-changing and shape-shifting at the best of times, throw in a global pandemic with no tangible timeline that indicates when we’ll be able to continue with our lives at the regular pace, and you’re faced with a landscape that’s difficult to navigate.

The useful infographics in this article give you some great ideas for trends you should focus on within your brand/agency at this time. Hot Tip: Interactive content, SEO and AR/VR make the top three.

(Talking of AR, have you had a chance to test out the new Google AR – Animals? It’s perfect for those times that you want a hedgehog on your desk but you don’t want the commitment of a pet hedgehog.)

In summary, we’re definitely developing a deeper level of understanding about the effects of Coronavirus and are starting to adapt to life in quarantine. Some key takeaways from the articles we’ve been reading this week are:

  1. While you may not be able to do what you normally do, take this time to focus on other areas you now have time to improve on.
  2. Social media platforms are working with us to ensure that we all stay connected.
  3. We’re gaining knowledge on the initial negative effects of the Coronavirus imposed quarantine, stay alert and agile for what may come next.