Businesses all around the world have been affected by the most disastrous pandemic COVID-19. With the whole world in a lockdown & quarantine situation, online marketing has acquired the most responsible role to play. Beyond providing security and support to their employees and businesses, the brands have an additional responsibility to act responsibly and empathetically during this crisis. In this worldwide cultural crisis, it is even more critical for brands to handle the issue responsibly and focus on considerate, empathetic, and tactful promotions.
So, how exactly should marketers do to manage the marketing of the brands effectively but responsibly during COVID-19? Listed below are five ways that can prove to be helpful in empathetic marketing.
1. Review the Scheduled Content
Unlike some big brands like Ford & Nike and more who were produced quick-turn campaigns created for COVID-19, small businesses may not find it so easy. Such campaigns are always impressive, but there are unreasonable risks involved that make this kind of marketing impossible for small business owners.
Keeping this in mind, the very first thing to do is review your scheduled content. Check the status of all the content that is pending in the pipeline and which project requires immediate attention.
When you review your content, filter out the content that is not suitable or appropriate according to the current situation. However, retain this content for future use. It may not be appropriate in this situation, but it can work out wonderfully when the world is out of this great disaster.
Sort out the priorities. You will find many things that may require to be prioritized, and you may have to it move up in the interim or pivot the messages to make them more relevant. For instance, a campaign with the slogan, “Hugging is Caring” can be pivoted to “Social Distancing is Caring.” This same rule applies to visual campaigns as well.
2. Evaluate and Tweak Visual Communication
The power of visual communication is as strong as the words that are being used. So, you need to carefully review the message that your brand’s visuals are sending to your customers. While reviewing your visual content during COVID-19, keep a few things in mind.
Avoid posting any visuals that show people in close proximity, social gatherings, and workplace, etc. Tweak the Marketing Language. Revise or Reschedule the Visuals Review captions and other descriptions using the theme of closeness and getting touch etc. If you are unsure about the upcoming campaigns or visuals that may be awkward, revise them or schedule them for later in the timeline
3. Avoid Capitalizing on the Crisis
Capitalizing on any tragedy, natural disaster, or crisis is not ethical. It is even more critical to avoid being drawn to capitalization in the tense atmosphere of COVID-19. People are already apprehensive and in a lot of fear, and it wouldn’t be empathetic to take this as an opportunity to profit from such a situation.
Instead of spreading anxiousness, be with your customers, tell them that you are in it just like them.
Brands need to maintain contact pertaining to the crisis at hand but keep it relevant. For instance, you can educate your customers about the proactive measure that you have taken and any policy updates in lieu of COVID-19. You can also share some informative tips through infographicsand logo designing.
One thing that is of utmost importance is that no matter what you do, keep it to the point and effective. There is no need to create panic and alarm people for nothing. Share only credible information from authentic sources like UNICEF.
Mind your use of language and style. As a result of the pandemic, many people are out of jobs, have rationed food, lost loved ones, and facing other difficulties. Keep up the spirit of humility and empathy. Also, mind your tone. When sending out the message, be vigilant that is nothing offensive.
4. Be Positive and Be Humane
COVID-19 has already set the world on a grim tone. You don’t need to add further to this grimness with a somber and foreboding brand tone. Recall your brand’s purpose, vision, mission, and values. Rely on these and see where do they fit in the context of COVID-19.
Keep your messages humane. You can add positive material and give hope to others. Don’t think that images that have people smiling or doing something creative and unusual will be offensive. It can prove to be quite refreshing to see something fresh and cheerful. You can share what your employees are doing a lockdown situation to make it more personal.
You can also share your employee’s favorite books or Netflix binges. Those working from home can share their WFH pics to add a bit of fun to the overall gloom. Your teams can also share their pastimes and activities during the lockdown. Gardening, games, new hobbies, and what they are doing to maintain good health can give your brand a very empathetic reputation. And all this will lead to a stronger and more human connection with your customers, giving them the message that you and your employees are with them in this difficult time.
5) Providing Value in COVID-19
The main purpose of brands is to provide value, and the products and services that come in handy or add value in a time of crisis during this challenging period merit the consideration attention of the customers and clients who benefit from them. Your brand story should focus and relate how it has enhanced the lives of the people, even in quarantine.
Your brand story should feature benefits that your brand offers in this cultural moment. Even if your services or brand are not as helpful, you can still create helpful content. You can share educational material, provide entertainment, and help people deal with being locked up. Just be careful that there is no arrogance, and you don’t lose focus on people. You can market without stopping if it is adding value and helping people.
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