How brands can handle COVID-19

The world is experiencing fear and uncertainty with the unexpected onslaught of coronavirus across the globe. The disease has taken more than 8000 lives till date with the number of new cases increasing continuously.

According to World Health Organisation (WHO), ‘Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV).’ The virus is easily communicable between humans.

Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) has created panic in the public. The situation is getting worse day-by-day and there is an increasing need for authentic communication to pacify the public. With the help of proper precautionary measures, the disease can be effectively dealt with.

The Pandemic has created stress on the economy and the citizens. Brands contribute to a huge part of communication in people’s life today with constant engagement online as well as offline. It is time for corporates and brands to act responsibly and help manage the situation better. Following are some of the ways through which, I believe brands can handle COVID-19:

Educate people: Misinformation or half information is the root cause of most of the problems. This is also one of the major causes of increasing panic in the public. Brands have established channels to communicate with masses which they can leverage to pacify the public and encourage calmness. They should also take initiatives to educate the public and their employees about the precautionary measures to avoid the virus.  

Modify their services: Brands which provide subscription-based services can modify their offerings in a way to communicate their regards to their customers. Gyms can extend the membership period; coaching classes can provide online assistance, etc. This will send across a message that the brands are not operating with the sole purpose of making profit, that they care about their customers and will stand with them through thick and thin.

Discourage mass gathering: Brands from some specific industries dealing with non essential items can keep their stores closed to discourage mass gatherings and promote the precautions against the disease. They may continue to offer online shopping and home deliveries to serve their customers more effectively.  

Act proactively: Brands should be proactive in their approach and take instant actions based on the rapidly changing situations. The internal as well as external communications should be in real time.

Prioritise their employees: Brands should offer their employees appropriate help and work from home facility as to ensure their safety. Only essential staff should be asked to work from office and that too in rotations. The brands should maintain a sense of calm in its own people to tackle the situation better. The pandemic is testing the world together and we have to fight together and come out stronger. Effective communication and precautionary measures is the key to handle the COVID-19.

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

Sakshi Jain
Sakshi Jain is a part of the Class of 2020 of PG Programme in PR and Corporate Communications at SCoRe, Mumbai. She completed her winter internship with Adfactors PR, Mumbai.

Prior to joining SCoRe, she graduated as a BA degree in Mass Communication from Prestige Institute of Management and Research, Indore, and completed a two month internship with Aim High Consulting, Bengaluru. Her interest in the field of communication and Public Relations comes from her love for reading, writing and meeting new people. She is always keen on learning new things. Apart from that she is in love with food, dance and cinema.

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