NEW DELHI: Like it or not, the Covid2019 pandemic has pushed brands to the heights of innovation. Along with it comes creativity coupled with responsibility in ad commercials. As the pandemic swelled, advertisers saw an opportunity in showing their empathetic side to consumers.
According to industry experts, brands that maintain a presence during a crisis or an economic downturn are noticed and best prepared to benefit from the recovery period. Brand experts also feel that such campaigns resonate well with consumers, which in turn helps the brand to make a positive impact.
AdLift co-founder and CEO Prashant Puri believes, “For a brand, timing is everything and during this pandemic, empathy is everything. Consumers need to know that the brand understands them, the current reality and their needs and trials. Covid2019 frontline workers today are seen as saviours and heroes. By saluting front line warriors through their campaigns, brands are trying to assuage consumers by telling them they are with them in this fight against the pandemic. Consumers will feel a bond with a brand that reflects their feelings and emotions.”
IdeateLabs director Vrutika Dawda believes that consumers are expecting brands to showcase human values and this has the potential for the brands to have lasting relationships with them. “Brands have tweaked messaging from spreading awareness to celebrating the real heroes who are stepping forward to help others. This also portrays that they care and are there to support the people during such conditions. This will lead to loyal customers and strong brand recall in the future. The major objective of such brand campaigns is to build a long-term relationship with their consumers and strengthen their positioning in the market.”
Brands are effectively using social media platforms to create awareness. Some brands even temporarily changed their logos to show solidarity. The list includes Tech Mahindra, Coca-Cola, McDonald’s, Audi, Volkswagen, Shopper’s Stop and CARS24.
BC Web Wise creative director Anthony Padayachi says, “Brands across segments have often displayed a sense of solidarity with causes that their audience or the masses, in general, are concerned about. When done sensibly and with genuine intent, such campaigns manage to humanise the brand, thereby triggering brand love. Templatised storytelling doesn’t create any impact. It’s important to rethink how these stories are crafted, right from the insight stage. This will lead to stories that are sensible and different.”
Lets Influence founder Bhawna Sethi feels these campaigns drive brand recall without hard-selling the brand’s products. “It resonates well with the audience and can surely help brands to strike an emotional chord with the customers. However, brands should ensure that these campaigns are not force-fit and are in line with its overall purpose and ethos.”
“Marketers and brands are working real-time to outsmart all the changes happening in our ecosystem. While we want to stay on top of every rising tide and trend in the industry, it is important to distance ourselves from any kind of opportunistic messaging. We rather build foundation and integrity than just market share. Tactical trends are going to be momentary however strategic creative pursuits and shareable have always stood test of time,” adds DViO Digital founder & CEO Sowmya Iyer