The COVID-19 crisis is forcing many brands to exit their comfort zones as they adapt to the new normal. Back in February, before the crisis was dominating daily life in the U.S., Gartner wrote a prescient blog (click here to read) discussing the customer experience implications ahead. They suggested that marketers may choose to add messaging that is well outside their traditional areas of expertise:
“It might not seem, for example, that a retailer needs to address how customers can keep themselves safe in a pandemic, but conveying what your brand is doing to ensure a safe shopping experience … can earn trust (and business).”
As for actions, Gartner broke them down between proactive and active:
- “Proactive: Understand customers’ informational needs and provide that content proactively via websites, social media, and apps. This will help you to meet and exceed customer expectations, demonstrate your care, minimize contact volume, and avoid business disruptions.
- Reactive: Arm your contact center, social media, sales, and PR teams with the info they’ll need to demonstrate your brand’s concern for the health and welfare of its customers.”
New Messaging for a New Reality
Here are a few examples of brands who have proactively pivoted and altered their messaging to reflect new consumer needs.
- Little Caesars stresses the safety of their offering. The message (translated): “For over 60 years, Little Caesars has believed that every family is entitled to a pizza night. That’s why our pizza is baked at 500 degrees, and then nobody touches it. It’s available without any contact with free delivery. Tranquility. Always.” Watch here.
- Walmart celebrates their “heroes” – their employees – who are making sure people across the country have access to food and other much-needed supplies. The message: “Thank you for keeping us healthy, for keeping your spark alive, for doing your part. And for helping this country stay united.” Watch here.
- Sprint focuses on providing support while customers are sheltering in place. The message: “At Sprint, our priority is the wellbeing of our clients, employees, and communities. During these uncertain times, we want you to continue to receive the same great service without having to leave the security of your home.” Watch here.
In order to help our extended community, Univision has built several new platforms to benefit both our audience and marketing partners.
For example, our Los Angeles station, KMEX, partnered with hard-hit local restaurants to create a digital destination to locate which restaurants were open for pick-up and delivery. The platform includes a series of on-air public service announcements to drive awareness and use. Hispanic consumers over-index in QSR usage and, with larger families to feed, they are a key consumer segment for these brands. The initiative has received spectacular feedback from clients and consumers alike. You can visit the site here and see the PSA’s here.
The auto category is also experiencing disruption, and we are being proactive in partnership with auto clients. As car intenders navigate the new customer journey of closed dealers and multiple COVID-19 related offers, we teamed up with our digital auto expert, Jaime Gabaldoni, and the PR heads from our auto clients, to create a digital destination that aggregates updated industry offerings. The destination is being promoted by radio and TV spots. You can visit the site here and see the TV spot here.
These examples show how Univision is looking for ways to continue to inform and empower our audience, while we also work with our clients to proactively adapt to a new reality.
President of Advertising Sales and Marketing, Univision