A research by the Copenhagen Business School, Commodifying Compassion Project, explores COVID-branding messages.
With brands trying to remain relevant amid COVID-19, many brands executed campaigns that were either focused on “Covid-helping” or “Covid-coping”, as per the report. The research categorised 80 COVID-19 brand messages as “Direct Engaged”, “Indirect Engaged”, “Direct Disengaged”, and “Indirect Disengaged”.
Non-serious messages around treating the pandemic as an opportunity for indulgence were found to be problematic. However, scale and effort from global corporations to tackle COVID-19 was “surprising”, as per Lisa Ann Richey one of the research authors. For example, Coca-Cola suspended its marketing to support logistics assistance.
The report states, brands should avoid rushing out a message during crises and should be sensitive towards their consumers' needs. Organisations should ensure they send out correct messaging and aren’t associated with any harmful messaging or influencers.
[4 minute read]