If anything has been made clearer in the last few weeks, we are on the cusp of a new age of creative campaigns influenced or affected by new social distancing measures. Creative campaigns have changed for the foreseeable future, like putting the public good before capitalism, and being more empathetic when it comes to campaigns. Whether this change is for good or for worse, no one can tell just yet. This could mean more live-streamed activations because – excuse me, please take social distancing seriously? Or even maybe longer campaigns focusing on individual takeaways?
Without further ado, here’s how social distancing measures will affect creative campaigns and ways to market in times affected by COVID-19.
Readjusting brand messages
Not wanting to sound out of touch during this particular period is especially important for all brands and businesses hard hit by COVID-19 containment measures. To show their consumers that they care as well, brands are adjusting their messaging to show empathy and share how they are there to help in this fight against this virus. With recent reports about profiteering, many businesses have also done away with value for dollar or premium item messages in favour of ‘standing with the people’ communications. Take a leaf out of Grab Singapore’s notebook when they rolled out a service dedicated to taking healthcare workers home.
For the public good
In these tough times, many quotes help to inspire us but none resonate as much as when you hear this line in the 2016 Super Bowl TV Spot for Captain America: Civil War – “United we stand, divided we fall”, chiselled Chris Evans also helps to reinforce the message. Banding together for the public good (for the good of freaking humanity you guys?!) goes without thought. This means helping everyone better understand the severity COVID-19, curbing the spread, allowing us to return to our previous lives faster.
Nike came out with a “Play for the World” campaign to help encourage people to stay inside in a creative way while telling them to help everyone else around the world. Now that is in a way, for the public good.
In addition, brands are starting to emphasise on the emotional aspect around social distancing with “We stand with you” campaigns, over the usual fare.
Even the United Nations has issued a COVID-19 brief to creatives all over the world to help make this a powerful campaign. Not to mention, creative leaders are banding together to provide their expertise to help make submissions for the COVID-19 brief the best one yet.
We can also expect to see more ads talking about the more human side of people and calling for many to show humanity and selfless love.
Bidding their time
Brands are now empowering folks to do things on their own and at their own pace. DoubleTree by Hilton just released its famous chocolate chip cookie recipe to encourage people to take part in the Hilton experience without leaving their homes.
Word of mouth has also become more relevant as people share about little brands going the extra mile to make things work for their customers like how a local publication, Mothership published an article about F&B places in Singapore offering delivery that are not on major food delivery apps.
In addition, brands are watching public sentiment so there will be a lot more hesitancy to roll out campaigns. One tangible way that social distancing will affect creative campaigns is brands not wanting to jump into the mix, “keep their hands clean” rather than be called out for being insensitive during these difficult times. Ill-conceived campaigns ruin the industry and at a time like this, spell ruin for the brand and their associates.
Rather than shooting your shot and hoping for the best, drop by (actually no because CB) and let us show you our creative runs to help you navigate this tricky time. Take care, stay safe and #StayHome!