The pandemic has brought many things into sharp focus, not least the fragility of the economy. Moreso it would seem the weak grasp that most SMEs seem to have on the importance of maintaining marketing and advertising. Many at the start of the pandemic panicked, closing down ad spend or terminating contracts with agencies if they could. Of course nobody knew just how long the pandemic would last, or what support would be available, but to just shutoff your shop window to the world seemed incredibly short-sighted and often proved to be calamitous.
For every company that paused their marketing altogether, there would have been a competitor to capitalise on the gap in transmission. As Marketing Week recently reported, brands like Coca-Cola and P&G have results that tell a proper tale. P&G rallied and spent more on their marketing, whereas Coca-Cola went effectively off air. As a result, profits were high at P&G and dwindled at Coke.
The pandemic was a time when more eyes were on screens than ever before. A literal captive audience, perhaps a mercenary way to look at it given the circumstances, was too good an opportunity not to take advantage of. It wasn’t as some people say a time to ‘entrench’, rather it was a time to move forward. This has been proven with regards to the advances made to ecommerce during the past 18 months and the huge rise in online sales.
A global crisis can stall many things, but business has to continue. It’s just a fact. Fortune favours the brave as the saying goes and those who stuck out their neck have seen returns beyond expectations. For future pandemics, this may well mean we see even more advertising and marketing campaigns hyper-geared towards an audience undergoing change, disruption and uncertainty. Those who hold back are also holding themselves back.
Steph Henderson | Senior Account Manager