Brand and marketing through a crisis — promote the wins, you’ve earned it

by Emily Samuels, Consultant

Published on
August 7, 2020

In our previous Brand and Marketing Through a Crisis article, we explored the importance of businesses leveraging their owned channels during the pandemic. Just as critical in supporting a brand’s story are earned and paid channels. But are these crucial functions getting pushed aside in the current environment?

Here’s why now might be exactly the right time to share your brand story through media relations and advertising.

Building relationships through media relations

Similar to social media, media relations — or publicity — is a powerful way for companies to share stories with their audiences, but with a reach that extends further than their owned channels.

The key to media relations is to not only identify and package up the story, but to tap into what the media wants to hear. For example, a journalist for a local paper will likely be interested in how the story appeals to their local community, whereas a journalist for an industry publication will want to know how the story relates to or impacts that particular industry.

If a brand can successfully match the right angle to the right media target, it creates the perfect opportunity to showcase the human face behind the brand and what makes their business unique. For companies wanting to show their stability and determination during these tough times, now is the time to do it because the media is listening.

For more tips and tricks on landing a story in the media, check out our recent webinar in partnership with CCIQ — How to grow your business through free publicity.

Advertising — the known entity

If value for money and quantifiable results are driving marketing decision-making, then now might be the time to pull the advertising lever.

With Australians adapting to the work-from-home lifestyle, many are tuning in to the radio or TV while working. iHeart Radio has seen a 26 per cent increase of monthly users in March [1], while TV consumption is up more than 13 per cent on average during the day (when comparing the last week of March to the previous week [2]).

Some brands might feel it inappropriate to position their advertising content alongside COVID-related content, but if companies rule it out completely, they risk an opportunity to connect with their audiences. In a recent report by Integral Ad Science, 78 per cent of consumers said their sentiment towards a brand would likely remain unchanged when viewing ads that appear near COVID-19 content — so there’s little to be concerned about.

As media consumption increases and brands spend less on advertising, there is a prime opportunity for companies to proactively position themselves in the market at a lower rate than usual, with complete control over their message.

If you’d like to find out more about what activities you could — and should — be undertaking right now, please contact us.

[1] Source: IHeartMedia, March 2020, Adobe & Google Analytics, March 2020

[2] Source: https://www.cmo.com.au/article/672387/covid-19-leads-uptick-tv-catch-up/