Building brand equity – marketing in the wake of Covid-19
May 19, 2020 | Posted in: Articles & News, Branding, Marketing pow wow
Regardless of what alert level we are on for Covid-19, there is one thing everyone seems to agree on…life not only feels different now, but it will feel different on the other side. Marketing will become even more important as economies spiral into recession and although for some, that will be about how to acquire more customers, others are wise to the fact that marketing is about so much more than acquisition. It could be very tempting to cut back on certain areas of marketing spend, however, studies have shown that ‘brand equity’ is a major factor in how quickly businesses manage to recover in tough economic times.
So, what is brand equity and how do you go about building it? This article gives a pretty good insight into the basics of brand equity and how to protect it. Don’t worry if you feel that the ‘horse may have already bolted’ as far as addressing some of these things – a crisis is a great opportunity to work on brand equity in terms of how you respond to challenges.
For example, some businesses are using the challenges of government-imposed alert level restrictions on their operations to highlight their innovation. If you can solve your customers’ problems by introducing enhancements to products or services such as installing an e-commerce function on a previously non-transactional website, offering click and collect, introducing an app etc. you are a step ahead of competitors who are sitting on their hands waiting for Covid-19 to pass.
There have been some shining examples of generosity – businesses giving free trial periods for a couple of months, waiving certain fees, donating to charities and so on. These all help customers feel good about your brand and anything you can do to foster those ‘feel good’ feelings will serve you well long term.
On the other hand, unfortunately, there have also been plenty of examples of poor decision making, where businesses have turned this unfortunate situation into a greedy attempt to self-promote and exploit people. Some have just got it plain wrong or been accidentally insensitive. For example, KFC was quick to pull an ad in the UK which focused on “finger-licking” when it received complaints that it was inappropriate at a time when good hand hygiene is critical!
A good ‘sense check’ in making decisions about your marketing during this time would be to ask yourself this question “Will I be able to look back at the actions our business took during this time with pride, knowing that we were acting with the best intentions of helping people in a time of need?”. If the answer is ‘yes’, then the chances are that you are moving in the right direction for building brand equity.
If you are interested in exploring what brand equity means in your business and wish to uncover opportunities to build it, get in touch.