Finding the right balance between business as usual and addressing the ongoing coronavirus outbreak is a tough challenge for brands right now. It’s particularly difficult for those in sectors such as hospitality and events to carry on without seeming insensitive or come across as scaremongering.
In light of these challenges, we are starting to see creative new ways of spreading the message of social distancing by some of the biggest brands.
Take a look at my personal favourites below.
Usually a central hub of information on the best restaurants, pubs and clubs to go to on a weekend, the closure of these social spaces saw the publication cleverly rebrand itself to “Time In” to reflect the current climate. “Time in” allows the publication to stay relevant whilst also turning attention towards how readers can maintain distance but still connect with their city and its establishments.
Recent online content from Time In includes, “25 feel good movies on Netflix” and “Awesome Indian takeaways for deliver”.
Brewdog, have changed-up their usual service by launching “Brewdog Drive-Thru” as a way for customers to pick up their favourite food and drink without having to leave their car. The initiative not only encourages the public to practice social distancing but it also keeps its stockists afloat at a time of uncertainty for many businesses.
It is also one of multiple brands offering a discount for NHS staff and has started to produce hand sanitiser in order to help with current shortages.
MTV, among other channels are partaking in the #AloneTogether campaign which encourages the public to stay at home even if they don’t have any covid-19 symptoms. MTV promises to keep the public company during this time through live artist and celebrity takeovers, positive news bulletins and continued social engagement with users to ensure that social distancing does not result in isolation.
This campaign has had a great response in evoking the sense that we’re all in this together.
This year’s St Patricks Day celebrations were quite different to usual, resulting in many brands having to think outside the box in order to mark the occasion.
Chubbies shared its “indoor St Patrick’s day” tutorial video on “the right way to pour a Guinness”. Although some may say this is a little too light-hearted, it’s a creative campaign that is bound to raise a few smiles.
In order to implement social distancing, Chipotle closed their restaurants as a result of governmental advice but still allow customers to order online.
Chipotle have launched “Chipotle Together” which is a series of virtual hangouts for customers to participate in. The hangouts have been attended by up to 3,000 guests so far and hosted by celebrities including stars of the US show, The Bachelor, and live music from rock band, Portugal The Man.
East London brewery, Signature Brew, has launched “pub in a box” for customers who are self-isolating. The initiative includes a mix of beers, glasses, beer mats, a vinyl record and even a pub quiz and playlist. More impressively, the box is delivered by local musicians whose tours have been cancelled due to the coronavirus outbreak.