It’s been a month.

Just one month ago, March 11, the coronavirus (COVID-19) was named a pandemic. In the past month, a lot has changed and the way we do business will not be the same for quite some time.

If you have not yet shifted your perspective, your business is running out of time. Begin investing wisely and you will see the return in the months, and years, to come.

Brands are built over the long term, and your business must be ready for the day people once again return to the activities they love. “Now is not the time to ignore what your customers are thinking, feeling and doing,” said Nigel Hollis with Kantar Millard Brown, a brand development and research agency. “Rather, it is time to assess what is changing and think about how to position your brand for a swift recovery.”

Going dark puts your business at risk.

Companies that want to exist after this crisis will not stop spending. Research shows that 58% of advertising impact happens more than six months out. Long periods off air damage market share and erode the bond with consumers.

Once depleted, it becomes even more costly to reinvest in the long run.

Instead, companies should invoke a health mix of creative and strategic thinking. Stop simply running the same ad campaigns, but consider what messaging and what platforms will be a strategic brand investment.

This is not investing wisely:

Remain Relevant

Global brands are shifting their messaging to be sensitive to the current health pandemic. As one marketing analyst explained, smart companies are preparing to ride the three waves of COVID-19.

WAVE ONE: March – April 2020: Nothing but COVID-19.
WAVE TWO: April – February 2021: Transition to the New Normal
WAVE THREE: March 2021 & beyond: The New Normal 

Brands are switching their messaging, and sometimes even their products, to meet expectations.

Changes may be as simple as your company offering free delivery for the month. Or, in the case of major manufacturers, halting production to focus instead on PPE and health-related products.

Local companies, such as Old Glory Distilling Co, Casey Jones Distillery, and Chuckin’ Clouds Vape Shop suspended production of their traditional products to instead create hand sanitizer.

All three shared the sanitizer with first responders in the area, for free. While some may argue they shouldn’t promote the fact they’re helping the community, I say ‘why not’? It not only sets the tone of their brand (as intrinsically community focused) but it sets an example too.

Look at your current messaging. Is it empathetic, compassionate, and customer focused? If not, time to update.

DID YOU KNOW? With radio and digital creative at 5 Star Media, we can update copy and artwork in less than 24 hours. For free. When fluidity of message matters, we’re here for our clients.

What is Trending

Current trends point to using a multi-platform approach to advertising. A mix of online targeting, traditional media, and social engagement allows businesses to connect with consumers where they’re active.

People are consuming more media while at home, which has led to a saturation in certain areas. Media that can focus on key audiences, such as radio, OTT, and geo-location, allow companies to reach their core consumer faster.

DID YOU KNOW? A 2019 survey found that 91% of at-home workers listen to the radio each week.  

Shifting your message is most important. Companies are wise to focus on supporting families, understanding hardship, and being transparent. Now more than ever, companies need to invest in their humanity.

In a recent interview with Yahoo Finance, Warren Buffett reflected on the current financial situation.

“There will be interruptions, and I don’t know when they will occur, and I don’t how deep they will occur, I do know they will occur from time to time, and I also know that we’ll come out better on the other end.”

It’s predicted Buffett lost roughly $86 billion in the past three weeks. If he can remain optimistic, so can I.

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