Creating value for your brand

One of the key objectives of a communicator is to create value for the organisation/brand. Together, with the PR firm who is an equal partner for the organisation, the team works and strategises on various options to showcase the brand. Deliberations are continuous and the plan is fluid to change as per changing business priorities. Interactions with business leaders help redefine and further refine the engagement strategy. Usually, this is a structured process and the plan once made, is put in implementation mode.

If there is one thing that COVID-19 has made us all realise it is that plans can quickly fly out of the window during a pandemic or a crisis that has long term implications. Suddenly, marketing brand communications found itself go back to the drawing board. New product launches were being stopped or delayed. Customers no longer had the paying capacity for products. In such a grim situation, how do you go about making happy jingles that you know will fall flat? What happens to the media outreach that you had planned?

There are no easy solutions of course. In the beginning, many of us thought this was a short phase and would quickly pass. The lockdown bought in the reality sharply. Falling global economy and the warning signals of the world going into a deep recession has had many of us re-evaluate our expenses vis-à-vis outreach programs/event/consultancy cost. 

As you go about reorganising your plans and your life, here are a couple of strategies that can help you continue to create value for your brand/organisation.

Reconnect with your purpose

Remember the famous Simon Sinek video on ‘WHY’ where he explained the whole concept of in the TEDx talk of 2009? This is the time to revisit it and find the purpose of your communication and how it connects with your organisation’s current situation. Create your own golden circle of why, how, what and reassess your plan.

Challenges bring in new opportunities

Each challenge has a silver lining of opportunity lurking somewhere. It is your task to go out there and find it. Figure out the opportunity that is around. The proliferation of digital tools and webinar classes is a classic example of how firms and organisations have reshaped their outreach, creating a new opportunity, and a new set of admirers and followers.

Last week the Commerce and Industry Minister Mr Piyush Goyal met with members of the pharmaceutical industry. During his interaction, he lauded the pharma industry for making India proud, by rising to the occasion during the Covid crisis and ensuring that in the past two months, the Country did not face any type of shortage of medicines. The industry ramped up its production of vital medicines that were needed and many joined hands to work on an early vaccine/cure. The industry was quick to snatch the opportunity that the crisis provided and upscale its operations and collaborate on research and development. Multiple encouraging and motivational examples abound of how this sector has almost transformed itself from a silo work culture to that of collaboration and partnership. What a fine illustration of how to harness new opportunities in a time of crisis.

Stay positive

No brainer, right? Nevertheless, this needs to be spelt out. In the midst of all that and working from home that quickly became the new norm, we have seen the rise of mental well-being issues and how many of us are striving to achieve the optimal work-life balance.  

Get hooked on to being positive and optimistic and you will find yourself being able to do more, do better and be less stressful. Stay in the moment, focus on the present and most importantly, be grateful for what you have. Do not forget to appreciate what you have even when you are in the dumps or have lost your job or have had to go through a salary cut. Look inwards and you will find there are indeed many things that you can be thankful for. Capture those things and savor them.

You can create value for your brand/organisation only if you are able to see the value of your own being. Begin now!

The views and opinions published here belong to the author and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher.

Sarita Bahl
Sarita Bahl is an alumnus of Tata Institute of Social Sciences and the Swedish Institute of Management Program. An experienced and versatile leader, she comes with nearly four decades of professional experience. She has over the years successfully overseen the communications and public affairs function and led the corporate social responsibility strategy for Bayer South Asia, Pfizer, and Monsanto, among others. Sarita has held multiple roles across diverse industries, the public sector, trade associations, MNCs, and the not-for-profit sector. Her areas of interest include advocacy, stakeholder engagement, sustainability, and communications.

As an Associate Certified Coach (ACC) from the International Coaching Federation (ICF) and Senior Practitioner (Mentoring) from the European Council of Mentoring and Coaching (EMCC), Sarita specializes in career transition, inner engineering and life issues. Sarita enjoys writing and is passionate about animals, books, and movies.

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