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Many industries will be hit hard throughout this crisis, especially events, IRL experiences, tourism, and any business that depends on open borders. However, crisis can be an incredible time for innovation. Any creative constraint can be a forcing function to level up where you’ve historically been weaker. Turing never would have decrypted Enigma if saving hundreds of thousands of lives (and the pressure of the British Government) hadn’t compelled him to do it.
So, take a long, hard look at those projects on your business to-do list and prioritize, because now is the time to innovate and stay relevant, not come to a grinding halt.
The exact tactics will depend on industry, but everyone has an opportunity for a branding play. In the face of economic hardship, your brand will have to be far sharper than it’s been in the past to earn the cash of customers as they tighten their pocketbooks.
For one of the events-based nonprofits we advise, a community mainstay who hosts civic discussions, we’re launching a branded content play that shows how they’ve helped the community through panics in the past, which 1) amplifies their rich 120-year legacy of social dialogue in the community, and 2) subtly digs at competitors who are new on the scene.
They’d seen the 1906 San Francisco Earthquakes and Fires, the Spanish Flu, the start and end of WWI and WWII, the brink of nuclear disaster in the Cold War, SARS, 9/11, and even Y2K. We’ve seen many scares throughout modern human history, and this is an opportunity for this nonprofit to show that humankind is resilient, as are they, providing a beacon of hope in an otherwise panicked time.
So while businesses work from home and universities move online, while hiring may pause, do not halt the forward motion of all departments. Now is the time to sharpen your brand and remind your users why you matter. A sharpened identity is good for everyone— it makes it easier to connect with stressed-out customers, and it requires less marketing spend to convert.
Be safe and smart out there, and if you think you could benefit from a brand play or a strengthened identity, contact us— we’re here to help.
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