Will 2021 see a return to marketing as normal? Unlikely, according to the 17 marketers and business leaders who I recently spoke to. But there are ways to adapt during this prolonged period of turmoil...
Many companies are simply doing all they can to survive during the current COVID-19 pandemic. In some sectors the only response that makes sense is to hunker down and prepare for the time when restrictions start to get lifted.
However, a growing number of companies, large and small, have stepped up to help where they can. We’ve been capturing some of these efforts and will continue to do so.
If you know of other companies which are trying to help fight COVID-19 and ease its impact then please add them in comments or email firstname.lastname@example.org with details. We’ll make sure they get added to our list.
The COVID-19 Hall of Fame
Airbnb are trying to help first responders and key workers fighting COVID-19 to get the accommodation they need, close to the places they need to be. Key workers are working extremely long hours and the last thing they need to do is commute for hours more.
In many cases they may also have vulnerable family members at home who they are putting at risk every day. Airbnb wanted to remove that burden. They are encouraging their hosts to offer their accommodation for free if they can (or greatly reduced) and have removed all their charges.
If you are an organisation suddenly having to deal with front-line communication of vital information or services in relation to the crisis – typically non-profits, healthcare, education, government agencies, NGO’s etc – then Acquia is offering free access to their platform for the duration of the crisis. Acquia already run some of the largest digital platforms in this area (for example many of the Federal and Gov sites in the US and beyond) and so have the capabilities to scale securely.
In the public sector, government agencies are leveraging the platform to communicate critical health and emergency information to constituents through landing pages and electronic campaigns.
BrewDog were one of the first breweries to retool their business to provide hand sanitizer.
“We are determined to do everything we can to try and help as many people as possible stay safe. It’s time to keep it clean,” tweeted the company.
The company has now packed and donated over 50,000 units to the NHS and local charities.
BrewDog are not the only ones working on the sanitizer issue with Leith Gin, Verdant Spirits and Pernod Ricard also all getting involved in efforts to ramp up production of hand sanitizer, which has become scarce around the world as the crisis has spread.
Logitech offered free headsets to US schools to help them transition to remote classrooms. The program has been so popular that it’s been suspended due to stocks running out. Nonetheless, it’s still benefited thousands of schools.
We really like this one. No conditions attached – just free, easy-to-clean, comfortable shoes for any healthcare worker in the US and Canada. They are even shipping for free at their own cost.
6. Coding Dojo
Need help getting a website updated or online ordering enabled to help your business get through the crisis then Coding Dojo are offering free access to developers. Its network of more than 4,500 alumni is being utilised to provide web and software development services for companies on a volunteer basis.
US only at the moment but we’re hoping to see more international efforts appear soon.
7. Digital Ocean
If you’re already working on a tech project to help with Covid-19 but need more resource, money or visibility then Digital Ocean have created an online hub to help. With over 20 projects already supported, over 190 hackathons arranged and over $200k in grants available they are already helping us all to win.
Lego have retooled their factory in Denmark to make 13,000 safety visors a day for frontline healthcare workers. They also committed to giving 500,000 lego kits away to children in need during these hard times. #niceworklego
9. Johnson & Johnson
Johnson & Johnson sprung into action right from the start. While you might expect a healthcare company to go beyond the call of duty, its donation of over $3.7m in personal protective equipment (PPE) for frontline health workers in China demonstrated an immediate understanding of the seriousness of the problem and the need to go beyond ‘business as usual’.
Iceland, the UK supermarket and frozen food specialist, has enlisted UK families to film cookery videos from their own kitchens as part of a dedicated lockdown videos series. The idea is to offer very simple low cost recipes to help families eat well on a budget.
New research from online parenting village Channelmum.com reveals almost a quarter (74%) of families are cooking from scratch more in quarantine and half are experimenting with new dishes, in a trend dubbed ‘quarantine cuisine’. So, Iceland is publishing a series of one-minute recipe videos, like the one below:
11. Dun & Bradstreet
The data and insight giant has been rather busy. Firstly, it launched a COVID-19 Business Impact Research Platform to provide government agencies with data, analytics and insights to help determine the full impact of the virus on business communities across the US, UK and Canada.
Secondly, Dun & Bradstreet has offered a free Business Essentials package to small businesses in the UK to help mitigate risk and restart growth following the coronavirus outbreak. For a three-month period, eligible companies can take advantage of its credit rating monitoring tool, plus an analytics platform for sales teams.
Have we missed something?
For every one example we’ve listed above there, there will be dozens more we have missed (or even possibly hundreds). We would love to acknowledge every business that is trying to play its part.
Share your story with us below and we’ll gladly add you to this article.
Please register below to unlock this article.
An email will be sent to you with your membership details.