It’s been a very interesting week for all of us, and some of you will be reading this from your homes instead of your normal work places right now and Mc&T is right there with you. So here is the news from the Mc&T team this week, who are still here and working as normal but may or may not be sharing a co-working space with an angry Pet. Our offices are a little different this week and we will be sharing our experiences via our social channels.
Now moving on to the coverage we start with the wonderful giffgaff:
Spending the night in with giffgaff
Pink boxes were appearing all over the internet this week as giffgaff continued sending special boxes of goodies out to members of their community, social following and digital channels. The giffgaff “Voice Night In” boxes celebrated spending an evening with close ones to watch the Voice which is sponsored by giffgaff.
BeaverTown keeps the Friday Drinks Alive with a Virtual Cheers:
Beavertown invited you to get involved in a virtual ‘Beavertown Cheers’ which took place at beavertowncheers.co.uk. After a long week of self-isolation, working from home and speeches from politicians they asked us to grab a beer, log in and raise a glass with fellow beer lovers.
It was an exciting moment for those of us at 4pm on a Friday where many of us would have been missing the tradition of Friday beers with our co-workers. So rather than cracking open a beer on your own to celebrate the week, Beavertown invited you to re-create what usually happens at 4pm with a big bunch of new virtual friends. It was smashing!
And here are some closing words on how brands should react to the current climate from our Chief Strategy Officer, Toto Ellis
Brands behave best when they remain purposeful, honest and human
There are two knee jerk reactions that I’ve seen in action that are to be avoided. One is to flee and run for the hills and say nothing at all. The other is to opportunistically jump on this crisis as a ‘tactical opportunity’. Neither is acceptable when lives are at risk, loved ones are being lost, health workers are under immense pressure and many people are fearing for their livelihoods.
I’ve always found it useful to draw analogies between brands and humans. The humans who I’ve admired most in this crisis so far have done neither of these things. They’ve reassured those who need it, taken a series of reasonable new actions to try and protect themselves and their families/friends and then made a simple offer of help that best befits their abilities. From setting up video calling for older relatives to dropping food at the doorsteps of those who are self-isolating.
This is how we’ve been working with our clients – reassurance, action, help.
Offering reassurance has involved providing truthful and relevant assurances that the given product/service is available, or if it isn’t or shouldn’t, what the alternatives are. The next step has involved taking well-informed actions to change the way the product or service is offered to reduce any risks to public health (for example contact-free deliveries). The final piece has involved seeing if there is a credible way for the brand to offer help to those in need. This needs treating with caution. The primary reason for doing so must be help, not profit or attention-seeking. But there truly are many ways in which brands can offer credible help when it comes to social distancing, reducing surface contact and helping those in self-isolation.
I saw a delightful example of a virtual book club for the over 70s who are self-isolating. So too the example of a personal trainer running fitness classes for residents to partake in from their balconies in a block of flats that were self-isolating.
How might we see banks make it easier for less tech savvy people to transact virtually/digitally? How might technology/telecommunication companies make it easy for people to stay connected whilst self-isolating or cut off from one another across country borders? Should we continue to be asked to sign for parcels on shared devices? Can we do more to ensure our ageing population has smart phones and radios to keep them connected to loved ones and the wider world? And what about the impact of the crisis on workers in bars and restaurants, or on the nation’s food banks (a role for supermarkets or panic-buying Ocado customers perhaps?), or on the mental health of our own health workers?
Studies proved that brands which continued to communicate in recessions are more loved post-recession than those that go quiet. Brands which remain human and helpful during the greatest public health crisis in a generation will be remembered favourably for their actions. So too our own friends.
– Toto Ellis CSO.
Until Next week, stay safe!