The impact of the recent coronavirus (COVID-19), state lock downs, and economic fallout cannot be overestimated. Add to that the surfacing of the George Floyd video, ensuing civil unrest, and mass bracing for the virus’ “second wave.” The psychological toll of recent events is real: One-third of people were showing signs of clinical anxiety or depression by the end of April; a full 80% say the U.S. is now “spiraling out of control.”
What can marketers do?
Insights for Marketers
STAY IN THE CONVERSATION BUT REMAIN SENSITIVE TO ONGOING SHIFTS
Research from Kantar, Twitter, Edelman, Harris, and many others shows that brand presence is wanted. People want businesses to be there, and people want them to provide stability and support.
Also remember that different people will respond in different ways, and respond differently over time.
- DO keep an ear to the ground. Don’t draw up new personas or segmentations just yet.Right now people’s emotions may be bigger drivers of behaviors than their demographics. But that may well change. Keep a closer-than-ever watch on data trends.
- DO support, support, support! Don’t tell people there’s a right or wrong way to react. A huge range of responses is normal and healthy. And always be confident in being there—people want you to be in the conversation, as long as your voice is positive!Don’t tell people there’s a right or wrong way to react.
- DO think holistically. Communicate in a way that “works” for multiple emotional styles and multiple situations—and makes no presumptions at all about how people might be feeling at any time.