Are you standing by your brand values during COVID-19?
In these unprecedented times during the COVID-19 outbreak, we all face huge challenges. But as marketers and business owners, there are things we can do during this period. We need to stand by our brand values and make sure customers remember how you acted during these times. Do your very best by your customers and be kind. People have long memories when times are hard.
Many businesses are doing a truly amazing job. Perhaps taking the lead from our beloved Marks and Spencer, who during the Second World War made utility clothing. Once the war was over, their customers remembered their efforts and stood by them.
What brands stand out in your mind amidst this pandemic?
For me, there are two companies that really stand out…
BrewDog - BrewDog began manufacturing free ‘Punk Sanitiser’ for those struggling to get it amid the huge increase in demand. Announcing it on their social media, they stated: ‘We are determined to do everything we can to try and help as many people as possible stay safe. It’s time to keep it clean.’ Read more.
Pret a Manger - Pret were one of the first companies to give all NHS staff free hot drinks and 50% off food. Through social media they kept us entertained with their professional chefs sharing some fabulous recipes for some of Pret’s top sellers. Their engagement on social media was exceptional. They also adapted their business quickly, selling their ethically sourced and organic coffee on Amazon. According to YouGov BrandIndex data, this led to a 3.7 point increase in Pret’s weekly Buzz scores (a net measure of whether consumers have heard anything positive or negative about the brand in the last fortnight). Read more.
Small local businesses – Many local businesses have made astounding efforts to look after their community. My local pub, the Three Horseshoes has delivered over 3500 free meals to the self-isolating and the over 70’s with the help of Client-Pharma Ltd. No doubt at a financial loss, they do this in the hope that when they re-open, their customers will remember this amazing gesture of goodwill.
The Market Garden, a small greengrocers in Cirencester (a company I have helped with their photography and social media) adapted quickly to the new way we shop. Closing the shop for browsing, they immediately started offering a pre-order and collection service, and dropping off bespoke fruit and vegetable boxes to their customers in the surrounding villages. As a result they have 5.0 / 5.0 on Facebook and their positive customer feedback is flooding in.
So keep reiterating your brand values and kindness to your customers and potential customers. Make sure you think long-term, because once we beat this, for many, business will no doubt be booming.