As everyone knows due to the corona virus the government is taking action to slow the spread of it, nearly every individual and organization now feels the impact.
Brands have also been facing trouble as the virus continues to spread. Almost every industry such as airlines, hospitality, events, manufacturing, etc. is fronting unfavorable consequences to such an extent that they have to either reduce or stop their operations. Major events have been altered and the global market is in a time of intense danger.
Now brands have also jumped on to the bandwagon to ‘educate,’ stay visible and relevant and, express solidarity with consumers in the midst of a global crisis.
HOW INDUSTRIES ARE AFFECTED:
It is well known that the outbreak of the novel corona virus has completely reshaped everything that this year was going to be about.
- As events or, as Twitter would say “Everything”, is canceled, Supply chain production schedules are worse effected a trickle-down effect on the businesses participating around those events is likely to occur.
- With travel restrictions, brands are having significant issues moving products and people from region to region. In connected world trade, that spells big trouble. Even products are being assembled at the destination and to generate profits becomes more challenging.
- Services such as Uber, Airbnb, public transit, air travel, and companies are potentially facing challenges, as users are choosing to avoid close contact in exchange for staying home. This will not only clash those company’s bottom lines but also their employees’ work schedules and employment status.
Are employees doing their work productively at home or are they spend most of the day laying in the bed or networking? Does working from home improve efficiency or damage the spirit? The results till now have been differing, which has left brands in confusion and to refine their methods.
Now brands will be forced to communicate how they are not only taking precautions with their employees but also how quality control mechanisms are increasing to ensure no contamination or spread of the virus to their consumers.
MARKETING NEVER STOPS:
- Burger King Corporation is advertising a Quarantine Whopper recipe, which users can make at home during their quarantine period and they have updated their menu as well.
- Another good example is Nike, which put out a campaign encouraging people to ‘play inside’ as governments enforce social-distancing measures. As per Nike’s usual standards, the copy—by Weiden+Kennedy—was standup: “If you ever dreamed of playing for millions around the world, now is your chance.”
- Indian dairy brand Amul set out a series of messages encouraging people to wash their hands, greet others using the no-contact Namaste method, and to work from home. The digital advertisement featured the famed Amul girl.
- McDonald’s Brazil displayed an ad that showed its iconic golden arches being separated to indicate social distancing.
- Coca-Cola bought an ad in New York City’s Times Square and extended the space between the letters that spelled its brand to also indicate social distancing.
- Panda Express reduces its menu to soften the kitchen stress and it is making packages to feed the patients, doctors, workers, etc.
- Here’s another brand that has dropped its name from their packaging, but this time it’s for a good cause. To prevent solitude among the elderly, Cadbury UK is letting go of all the words from its ‘Dairy Milk’ bars, leaving behind just its trademark purple and iconic “glass and a half” of milk logo. This aims to encourage the younger generation to spend seniors, as according to research, some 225,000 senior citizens go a week without talking to anyone.
SOME OTHER BRANDS
This is a time for gratitude and playing the long game. Here is a running list of brands that are getting it right.
- Microsoft: It declared that they will continue to pay their employers who make them available. Also, they will carry on paying all the workers and hourly service providers. This is independent of whether their full services are needed or not.
- Google: Aside from establishing a corona virus fund that enables all temporary staff and traders around the world. It has allowed to take paid sick leave if they have potential symptoms of corona virus, or can’t come into work because of quarantine, it has also launched their video conferencing app named Hangouts Meet, available for all G-suite customers until July 1, 2020, where they can attend and save meetings.
- Loom: loom is a video, screen recording and sharing service. It has made Loom Pro free for teachers and students at K-12 schools, universities, and educational institutions. They have also taken out the recording limit on free plans and have cut the price for Loom Pro.
- CloudApp: A tool or software cloud-based and local components work together like it lets you capture and share videos, images, and gifs, they are offering their subscription at 50% off.
- LinkedIn: The social networking website initiated to open up 16 of its learning courses for free. Courses that will end up providing knowledge on ways to stay productive, build relationships when you’re not face-to-face use virtual meeting tools and balance family and healthily work dynamics. The company is also using its powerful platform to share news on the whole, to help businesses use live video to replace onsite events and deal with business continuity.
- eBay: eBay offers free services for smaller businesses. They called it “UP and Running” and Pledged to donate $100 million
Mark Cuban Companies, Forbes8, Shine Distillery, Teal book, Adobe, Merro, Zello and many more.
WHAT ARE BRANDS DOING:
- First and foremost they will have to do what they have always done best – adapt. Staying on top of the latest trends, watching the data for insight, and understanding the need of consumers during the pandemic will be key in driving successful marketing strategies moving forward.
- Focusing on multinational communication and online content that is keeping the consumer updated and staying in touch with them also taking charge of their entertainment.
- Ensuring their brand safety in advertising by gaining a better understanding of content and putting it right especially during this sensitive time
- Switching to high-quality online resources.
As the impact of the corona virus continues to unfold, brands and agencies need to keep a close eye on the changing consumer behaviors and impacts on individual industries to ask the right questions and prepare themselves for any outcomes and find new opportunities.
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