This July #BizUnity Month will focus on companies standing together for good! This is a prime opportunity for a sponsor to be seen to be standing up and together for SA business.
Sticking together, in familiar circles, is a natural instinct. Especially in times of danger or uncertainty; there’s safety in numbers. Herds, hives and communities provide ‘herd immunity’ or ‘herd protection’ against threats.
Economic herd immunity
At a recent Kantar webinar, commenting on how companies might respond to current pandemic crises, Lynn Gordon shared the insight that…
“One of the most important things brands can do now is to provide signals of safety for consumers.”
What are ‘signals of safety’?
How can brands provide an enhanced sense of safety for consumers through these times? Brand owners, we are assured, who continue to communicate and connect with consumers through ‘a crisis’, will emerge stronger on ‘the other side’ but what can they really do?
From social isolation to social cohesion
Arguably, what is needed now are not traditional emotive brand assurances such as “We’ve always been there for you” or “We deliver”, but more qualified, ‘hand-holding’ insights. Brand communications can provide these ‘signals of safety’ now, by steering consumers towards specific or regular brand rituals, familiar touchpoints and solutions.
When your brand’s got your back
Perhaps brand owners have the opportunity (and responsibility) now to revisit exactly what it is they really mean in people’s lives, by asking questions such as:
Why should customers prioritise our products, services and brands in their lives now? When and where is the best time for us to connect? How can we assist with common problems – time management, digital overload, isolation, skills gaps, self-care? What do consumers need to do now? What do they need to know now? How will we all benefit? How, when and where can our consumers most easily access our solution touchpoints?
Answering these questions will allow brand owners to continue to speak to consumers, in a unique brand voice while taking cognisance of the need for appropriate tone. Since the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic, many of South Africa’s leading brands have already successfully been doing just that, and many more will follow, asking how our brands can enhance peace of mind for overwhelmed consumers.