3 Ways To Build A Positive Brand Image During COVID-19


Table Of Contents


As A Brand... You Still Need To Do Marketing Despite The Gloom + Doom

COVID-19 made 2020 an extremely hard year for everyone. Ever since the pandemic began, economies around the world came to a grinding halt. Yet, businesses must be ready to bounce back and adapt to a new normal as quickly as possible. Due to the social distancing protocols that are still in effect, in-person marketing took a major hit.

Consumers are now significantly more open to new experiences, digital or on-site, and their response prompted a great shift in marketing tactics across all industries. While every industry is different, there are common trends we could follow. In this blog, Hollywood Branded discusses 3 marketing strategies that all brands should follow to continue to build a positive brand image during a COVID-ridden world.

3 Ways To Build A Positive Brand Image During COVID-19

The New Normal

As the pandemic forced most of us to stay in our homes, it also forced consumers to change their purchasing style. Personally, I rarely spend time in-person shopping now compared to pre-COVID times, and I had almost no chance to make an impulse purchase on-site. Since most of my friends and I are still working from home mode, we also have less of a desire to buy new things in general. During a time when people have a decreasing want or need to spend money, building a positive brand image through extensive marketing matters more than ever for every business.

product placement guide

Transparency: Let Your Consumers Feel Safe

Opening up about your safety guidelines to your customers is the key to creating a great marketing campaign as we shift to the "new normal." While customer safety might not be the most important topic when it came to advertising for brick-and-mortar brands in the past, now it certainly is. COVID brought environmental safety to the center people’s attention. For diners, eating next to an asymptomatic carrier could get them sick, and for retail workers, being exposed to a customer with COVID-19 could get them sick. In a time where the pandemic makes people feel insecure in public spaces, gaining customers’ trust is of the utmost importance. Therefore, openly disclosing your protection measures, is often a good start.

On March 13, McDonald's Philippines aired a serious announcement on COVID precautions they will take, via Youtube. In the following months, they subsequently aired the “M Safe” series to reinsure both their customers and staff that McDonalds is doing everything it can to maintain a virus-free environment.

While most restaurants don’t have a McDonald-sized ads budget, it could be done with much simpler measures. You could add a new block on your homepage that outlines how you’re ensuring your customer’s safety with increased sanitation practices, limited seating, and any other precautions. Taking it a step further, you could also take a more creative approach. The restaurant shown below, for example which made huge Teddy bear plushies a part of their social distancing program. Not only do they satisfy the safety requirements, they are also excellent marketing material. As long as you live up to your word, branding your business as a COVID-safe environment in a convincing manner is one of the easiest ways to stand out.

Deutsche Welle, Covid-19 creative marketing, restaurant, social distancing

Deutsche Welle

Empathy: Connect Your Brand With Kindness

COVID-19 made many of our lives harder and humanity needs to stay united now more than ever. As the world economy plummets due to the pandemic, more and more families are considering cutting costs due to layoffs and hiring freezes. Now, producing marketing campaigns that entice people to spend more money on your products might not be so effective. In a time where many feel vulnerable and afraid, it is critical to show your customers that your brand truly cares.

From restaurants providing free hot meals for hospital staff to airlines giving 100% refund to those who had to cancel their travel plans, consumers will remember those acts of kindness during a crisis. Emirates Airlines, for example, posted a clip called “Do You Remember” on April 4, 2020. Instead of prompting people to fly again soon, it asks its viewers to recall the good times and memories that took place before COVID, and suggested people to stay in their homes for the safety of all. Without even hinting its audience to choose Emirates Airline over others, it left its viewers with a caring, considerate impression that fits its reputation well as one of the first-class airline brands.

Businesses must move forward with genuine empathy. Amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, a study engaging hundreds of Americans showed that 36% of them “plan to continue to use new brands they’ve tried after COVID-19”. In turn, a brand could easily enlarge its customer pool by demonstrating generosity and winning people over with heartwarming gestures.

empathy marketing, covid-19 marketing

Marketing Tech News
New call-to-action 

Media-Savvy: Explore The Full Array Of Digital Marketing

COVID-19’s impact on consumer behaviors and attitudes should not be overlooked. By forcing people to stay inside, it made a lot of us shift our focus to the online world. There is much more traffic on the web now, so much so that Netflix's European division had to temporarily cut its quality to relieve the pressure on internet service providers. The ROI of paid ads, thanks to the increasing amount of people surfing online, also showed a general increase amid the COVID crisis. 

From traditional media platforms to short video apps, now is the best time for brands to leverage the power of digital marketing. Taking TikTok as an example, it served as an outlet for millions of Americans to dance their way out of boredom during quarantine. As the #1 trending video-sharing social platform in the U.S right now, thousands of brands made TikTok their new home for influencer marketing. TikTok offers brands new ways to advertise themselves during COVID. Aside from partnering with the big names, TikTok made micro-influencer (someone who has between 1,000 to 100,000 followers) marketing a fresh trend. While most small brands can’t afford to get macro influencers endorse their brand, they could often reach out to dozens of micro-influencers and ask them to produce content at a much larger scale. Thanks to TikTok’s unique recommendation algorithm, those videos all have a chance to pop up on viewers’ screens based on their topic instead of being buried behind posts made by the big names.

Aside from TikTok, there are numerous marketing platforms that could bring brands great exposure. While the offline world took a major blow in terms of sales and marketing, it's important to not ever stop looking for new opportunities to market your brand online.

Micro-Influencer Marketing, instagram, follower, clothing, cheap fashion - Reuters


Start Marketing Today!

Although sales may be down for many businesses, now is not the time to cut back on advertising and marketing. More than ever, brands need to continuously deliver messages to their customers, demonstrating their commitment to safety and their caring attitude. From social media to email marketing, there are numerous ways you can both keep in touch with your existing customers and appeal to new ones. In an era where everyone’s life is drastically changing, be the first one to adapt!

Check out our other blogs about brand marketing and creative advertising! 

Also - don't miss out on our social influencer classes that can help you better run your own social influencer campaigns!

Hollywood Branded Influencer Marketing School