How brands can help in times of a pandemic

The  Covid-19 crisis has brought humanity to a point of inflexion about how mighty or advanced we had become as a society. The giants of Google, Facebook, Amazon and Apple don’t seem so mighty anymore and have themselves run for safety. Private individuals have felt a sense of “smallness” in face of the crisis and are looking for reassurance and guidance. How can you help your community cope with the anguish over the global covid 19 pandemic,

 
 

Talking to your community in times of crisis carries a lot of weight and goes a long way in helping others who need it most. People are suffering from anxiety and anguish over the looming bad feelings as the virus effect takes its toll on family, friends and society at large.

Rumors, anxiety, prophecy and science fiction have overtaken social media and increased the level of anxiety of people. A source of highly reliable information and help tips can go a long way in bringing a layer of comfort.

First of all, be mindful of putting aside all your marketing objectives and manage your expectations. Do not do this for your bottom line or to gain market share. Do it because its the right thing to do and because you can’t operate normally in times like these.

 

Educate

As a brand your role to help people get through the virus outbreak is paramount. Most people are searching for reliable and accessible information that can help them cope and prevent anguish.

First and foremost use only recommendations from the UN, the World Health Organisation, the John Hopkins Center and your local health authorities and expert professionals.

Then provide tips and care advice to help your community deal with the pandemic and steer clear of any forecast or projection and stay on facts. Use visuals and videos to illustrate your tips and other counsel.

Do not fear to repeat yourself in subsequent Posts, but change your source and visuals.

 

 

Create a dedicated channel

In times like these people need a dedicated source of information that they can trust. You can open a special Twitter account that you can entirely dedicated to the crisis. The channel can use reliable established sources to relay information and gather your community’s questions and inquiries. This channel can push the same information on your existing social channels. Brand it as a crisis monitoring platform to identify it clearly as such.

The role of this dedicated channel is paramount. First it helps establish authority and focus on your ability to be at your community side when it mattered most. Then it can provide seriously helpful info, updates and data such as help lines, and other resources. 

Last, create email alerts or SMS alerts and allow your customers and followers to respond.  The emails and SMS messages will provide your audience with timely updates they can share with their family and friends.

 

Extend your help

Anyone has something he can share or give. Talk to your different departments and see how they can help at their level or in combination with other departments. Donations, contributions, access, and innovative ideas can play a part and help those who have much to lose from the pandemic disruptions. If you want to make a donation, reach out to an influencer who can take your message of giving further. This will widen your messages reach as the influencer community can also subscribe to your helping initiative. Hopefully, in   turn, will open your communication platform to more readers who are seeking reliable and secure information.

 

Hold an e Forum

Look at it as just another form of content. Pick up the phone and call the experts in your area who are leading health professionals to join your audience on a live webcast. This format carries many benefits for your audience. The number one benefit is stewardship on a leading unfortunate topic.The E forum can be a unique opportunity to speak to your audience and underline the need for preparation while you provide value to all citizens. 

At the individual level, your speaker can answer live questions and hear the community’s concerns. Your speaker can also urge people not to panic and to follow procedures for reducing the risk of spread, such as proper hand-washing, covering their nose when sneezing, coughing into their elbow, and working from home where possible. The webcast can be recorded and emailed or shared on social media.

 

 

Take Action

On the communication level, it’s a fact that when people would have heard these tips and counsel enough times, they would appropriate measures, but one can never repeat them enough or with enough force. Your role as a caring brand is to provide help and guidance to your community especially in such difficult times.  In this Post I have provided some communication tools to help you do your part. Time is of the essence. Take action, use them and improve on them.  

 Good wishes to all of you.

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29 Comments

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  10. Omar Alaoui

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    O

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