Q: Should my brand be talking to, or helping, consumers in this period of isolation?
The question is not if to react to the current situation, it is when and, of course, how?
The current period of isolation will come to an end, whether that’s in weeks or months, but how gradual the transition will be is unknown. Brands that have sought to capitalise, opportunistically, or with a sense of genuine community spirit, have had a mixed response. McDonald’s separating its arches logo looked great on paper, but did nothing to help, and drew the ire of an anxious public.
We’re hearing from consumers that they’re happy for brands to show how they’re supporting their staff and communities at this time. The vast majority, though, want ‘business as usual’ and expect a brand to be relevant via their products and services – Burger King sharing the recipe for the Whopper, for example. It’s a case of not being out of step contextually with any communications, rather than radically changing course.
And definitely don’t go dark. Experience from past market downturns, particularly the global financial crisis of 2008, has taught us an important lesson – brands that go quiet during crises lose share after it. Mental availability, even when physical availability is lacking, is crucial. Holding steady – in both media and creative planning – is more important than doing anything new right now.
A: Launch ideas that provide valuable help to your community – your employees, your customers and their consumers. Make sure it’s brand relevant and dynamically planned and executed.
This is part of our FMCG (CPG) Thought Leadership x Covid, read more here.
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