Our recommendations for how to alleviate consumers’ coronavirus panic.
Consumers are experiencing widespread anxiety right now, trying to find a balance that feels comfortable in a totally abnormal “new normal.” Working from home (or not working at all) has disrupted routines, caused chaos with childcare, and taken away the clean break between a day at the office and home time. Social media is flooded with news and no longer offers the easy escape it once did. Social distancing and stay-at-home orders have changed the pattern and flow of people’s lives. From behavioral and lifestyle changes to economic and health uncertainty, consumers are on edge.
But brands still need to reach their consumers, and the first step in addressing them is to recognize the headspace they are in. Brands can help relieve consumer anxiety with what they say and with what they choose to leave unsaid. Cadbury and Axe are two brands that have pulled recent campaigns that would have felt insensitive or off the mark in light of the recent shifts in consumer lives. Yes, they had to absorb the cost of the shelved campaigns, but the recognition of the current world situation is invaluable in terms of public opinion. It’s not about forcing your brand to be a part of the narrative, it’s about finding pain points for the consumer and working to alleviate them.
Consider both helping to relieve the generalized anxiety, but also catering to specific issues that have arisen out of the COVID-19 response. Can’t go to the gym? Barry’s Bootcamp is doing free daily streaming of their workouts on Instagram. Can’t figure out how to relax? Headspace is offering tailored meditations for healthcare professionals, educators, and the rest of the workforce. If you can do kind deeds for your workers or others, it’s greatly appreciated right now — and being able to share that with your consumers is a big win. A great example is Apple sending thoughtful care packages to employees caught in the quarantine in China. It’s the right thing to do, and consumers will take notice.
Source: Marketing Dive
The bottom line is to be authentic, be thoughtful, and be aware of consumers’ altered lives in order to speak to them in an anxiety-reducing manner during this global crisis.
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