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Research reveals effective social media crisis communication strategies during COVID-19 pandemic

The  COVID-19 pandemic  is a once-in-a-generation crisis with  lasting economic and societal consequences . Crises and disasters often bring unpredictable catastrophic  changes  to the market. Yet, effective management of a crisis can help businesses reduce the event's negative impacts and shorten the recovery time. As the global economy  begins to recover , businesses are making  changes to adapt  to the post-pandemic world. For example, more companies now let employees  work from home  permanently. When people work remotely and classes are taught online, social media plays an even more critical role in crisis communication than before. Research identifying the types of social media messages that get people's attention during the COVID-19 pandemic is timely and helpful in supporting business decisions regarding crisis communication. The empirical study about crisis communication strategies on social media I worked with Drs.  Jungwoo Lee  at Yonsei University in South Korea and
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Travel prices are up, but there are still ways to save in the last minute.

Are you traveling this summer? If so, I hope you have already made plans/arrangements for the trips because everything is getting pricier as more Americans are hitting the roads again.   This WSJ report/video helps explain why rental cars are getting so expensive these days. Are you still looking for a last-minute deal? Here are a few tips: How to find low prices during travel's dynamic pricing era .  Summer travel tips to save money at the last minute .  Last-minute ideas, expert advice about summer travel from "The Points Guy" Brian Kelly .  Note: The picture was downloaded from  the Time magazine. 

Behind Dollar General's strategy to dominate rural America - A WSJ video

Do you shop at Dollar General? I don't, but I shop at the 99 Cents Only Stores, not because I don't like Dollar General, more because there is a 99 Cents Only Store in the neighborhood.  Do you wonder why Dollar General is doing so well even during the pandemic? Check out this Wall Street Journal video for more insights.  Do you believe its growth will continue after the pandemic?  Note: The picture shows Dollar General's first new small-format store called DGX in Nashville, TN (opened in Janurary 2017). The picture was downloaded from TheShelbyReport.com . 

Research shows that you should let consumers’ photos speak for your business

The advance of technology and the widespread adoption of smartphones and handheld devices in recent years have enabled us to publish our experience about a product or service through online photo or video sharing and provide a review. Online review websites have also updated their features, making it easier for consumers to attach pictures or videos to their reviews. As both consumers and businesses adapt to the new photo-sharing trend, it becomes crucial to expand our knowledge regarding user-generated photos’ (UGPs’) effect on  online reviews . An empirical study about user-generated photos I worked with a research team in an interdisciplinary project to assess UGPs’ effects on  the helpfulness of hotel reviews . We published our findings in the  Journal of Hospitality and Tourism Research . The paper is entitled “Let photos speak: The effect of user-generated visual content on hotel review helpfulness.” The hypotheses We drew from the media richness theory and advanced five hypothes

Besides higher wages, what else can businesses do to address labor shortages?

Last week,  COVID-19 cases in the U.S.  hit their lowest rate since September. Deaths were also at the lowest point since April last year. Moreover, close to  60% of adults  in the U.S. have already received at least one dose of a vaccine. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)  announced on May 13  that: People who are fully vaccinated no longer need to wear face covers or maintain a social distance in any setting unless they are required to do so by laws or specific guidelines. Fully vaccinated people can also refrain from testing following a known exposure (with a few exceptions). Some businesses , such as Starbucks, Costco, Trader Joe’s, Walmart, Sam’s Clubs, Universal Studios, and Disney parks in Florida, have decided to follow CDC’s new guidelines. Fully vaccinated people are no longer mandated to wear a mask in their establishments. The U.S. economy is recovering, with highest job gains in the leisure sector Under a much-improved situation, people are ready to  tra

Why does a major bakery café add pizza to its menu? (By Jessica Elsea)

            On October 28, 2021 Panera releases their Flatbread Pizzas. The original lineup included a margarita flatbread pizza, a cheese flatbread pizza, and a chipotle chicken flatbread pizza. Although this move looks like it might be a way to boost sales during the pandemic, flatbread pizzas have been in talks for over a year before the release.  Will pizza help with delivery sales?           The strategy behind this move seems to be sold as a way of providing more meal options with clean ingredients that customers can feel better about eating, rather than some other fast-food options. However, this move has seemed to be more of a push to boost their delivery sales. Delivery sales have almost doubled with the launch of the flatbread pizza, and with this increase in delivery orders, overall sales have increased by thirty percent (Ellwanger, 2020). Delivery has been able to take off for many fast-food chains during the pandemic because of its perceived safety.            For Panera,

How to choose the best credit cards for travel (By David Mai)

  Traveling in a Post-Pandemic World If there was one thing the pandemic taught us, it was that everybody became hesitant and unwilling to travel. Shaver (2020) of The Washington Post shared an interesting tidbit in which Americans were actually staying home less during the pandemic, according to research that tracks users' smartphone data.  The quarantine fatigue affected nearly everyone who lived an active lifestyle or loved to be out and about in the world. It was simply not a safe time, and too many regulations were in place that deterred consumers from traveling for leisure. Consequently, the COVID-19 pandemic significantly impacted the travel and hospitality industry. Yet, there is no doubt that people will yearn to travel again when the pandemic is fully lifted. Around this same time, credit card companies have developed unique ways to retain business with consumers who look to maximize rewards and benefits for their journey. A Little Preparation Goes a Long Way