Companies and brands, regardless of their size, are currently in uncharted territory whilst weathering the COVID-19 storm.
They want and need to take specific action and their audience doesn’t know what to expect. Consumers are reacting in different ways, and so are brands. There are consumers who are comfortable with buying and paying online for delivery, others are rather frightened of everything at this moment and then there are those who simply don’t know what to do with themselves!
What’s common for all these people, is that despite being in self-isolation, they still want to maintain normality and a daily routine in their lives.
If we were to describe brands as people, we could say that they too have this need for normality in common!
Here you will find a few tips on how brands should act during the COVID-19 pandemic to differentiate themselves and remain memorable to their customers.
Your customers need ideas and support. This is new for everyone; listen to your audience and react appropriately, never losing sight of your brand values.
The use of hashtags is not new. However, during the pandemic we are seeing hashtags on social media connecting people more than ever before! The use of current and relevant hashtags like: #StayAtHome, #StayAtHomeChallenge, #WorkFromHome #WFH, and more are highly trending and can get you great exposure.
Either decide on a unique hashtag that is relevant these days and build your message consistently or use these trending hashtags to your advantage!
If you are not able to have someone answering your messages 9 to 6 every day and your budget is too tight for new employees, then the best solution could be a Chatbot. Create a Chatbot that will answer your FAQs any time of the day and if your customer needs more attention, then direct them to your email or a specific telephone number that will be able to provide more detailed help or support.
This way, you are there whenever your customers need you, freeing up more time for you to keep working hard at keeping business going with new innovative ideas.
From spreading the word on washing your hands to comforting your clients that you are there for them, try to make the ‘staying in’ message look as normal as possible. Be as personal and real as possible. People all around the world are facing a new unknown every day. They want their favorite brands to help them ‘cope’ with the new reality and help them ‘face everyday challenges’.
Spread insights into how your brand is dealing with the current situation and provide comfort in that you’re taking measures and have a very clear understanding of what people are going through. Be transparent and approachable.
Transparency allows you to build a real relationship with your customers, making them more accepting of your communication messages right now.
Brands should not be pushing their customers to buy more products. Instead be supportive and comfort them by providing new and innovative ideas to ease self- isolation. Now, more than ever, you're investing in your audience’s trust.
Bird’s Eye launched a new campaign giving its audience ideas on what to cook. Giving tips on how to cook frozen salmon or beef and Life Hacks for kids like colouring templates and word games to beat the boredom of being at home! How all of this was communicated was awesome!
So, they took a basic daily task in the life of every Britton- ‘What’s for tea?’- and turned it into a caring social message. The ad clearly communicates that whilst this isn’t anyone’s biggest concern right now and we’re all facing bigger challenges, ‘everyone is doing their bit’. And so is Bird’s Eye, by providing some useful tips & ideas. Relevant to their local market, relevant to the current situation all through simple messages; We love it!
As a brand, you might need to adjust your strategy, broaden your communication horizons and do things that you normally wouldn’t do. For example, you might need to cancel that big Easter campaign you were planning. Or do you?
Why not adjust it and tailor your message to a more inspirational one?
Perhaps you need to share more insights or switch communication to live broadcast (Instagram live is great for this!) or share more Behind The Scenes (BTS) information (try Instagram stories for this one!).
If it’s fitting for your brand and is relevant to your core values, show respect and inspiration to those who deserve it. Like all these parents who are working from home whilst homeschooling their children, to the nurses and doctors that are giving a new and unique daily battle that we have no idea about.
Maintain your main communication pillar and adapt it to better fit the situation. You might have the opportunity to keep your original slogan like Virgin Media managed to do. Virgin media canceled their big Easter campaign and opted for a more current and simple campaign. They took their slogan to a whole new level, and for that, we salute them!
Get some inspiration on what it means to ‘stay connected’.
Ideas are flowing, innovation is at its peak! Consumer behavior may have changed overnight and it seems like brand communication should steadily do so as well. Prioritize, re-strategize and stay focused.
You know your brand better than anyone. Make the right moves, settle on your communication message and weather the storm. Better days are coming; make sure people remember you!
#StayPositive guys and #KeepRocking