Our Take on Preparing for the Current and Long-Term Impact of Coronavirus on Your Business

Last updated March 16, 2020

In the wake of coronavirus, there are a lot of concerns around the long-term impacts on all industries from travel & tourism and B2B to healthcare, education and manufacturing.

“This outbreak is unprecedented in terms of its nature of uncertainty and associated social and economic impact,” said Kazuo Momma, who used to be in charge of monetary policy at the Bank of Japan told Bloomberg News

Things are moving fast in these times of uncertainty, so we are first and foremost supporting our clients in strategic moves that are best for the health of their customers, employees and the world at large. When it comes to marketing, we are recommending they plan long-term for the eventual recovery, so their companies are positioned well when the dust settles. 

We still maintain our position that every business should be looking at this through their own lens based on the context of their offerings, audiences and tactics, as we mention in our blog about travel and tourism marketing last week. However, with the world changing at a rapid pace, for our travel and tourism clients, we are now recommending in this moment in time that they scale back paid efforts, or craft specific and selfless messaging that keeps the state of the nation and world in mind, as they could be seen as insensitive, opportunistic and tone deaf.

Fabrizio Pagani, a former adviser to the Prime Minister of Italy, looked to historical events for ideas on what the future holds and how the coronavirus will not only hit the economy, but the way we all do business. 

“The oil supply shock in the 70s led to the first efforts of energy conservation and efficiency,” he told Bloomberg News. “The demand shock determined by the great financial crisis was the rationale for a new, quite radical, regulatory framework across the banking and financial sectors.”

Fabrizio believes this will mark huge shifts in how we deliver education as well industrial and business strategies. Ultimately, the world will continue, but we must all be ready for constant change. 

For brands where it makes sense, we are continuing to manage the spend of their paid marketing efforts with a very close eye. However, for brands where we need to pause, we believe brands should reinvest their media funds into other proactive measures that will help them stay authentic and relevant when the market rebounds.

Now is the time to upgrade websites, spend time on brand development and positioning, write SEO content and plan for long-term initiatives that will set brands and companies up for success when people start buying, traveling and restarting a more normal lifestyle again. The goal is to get through the immediate impact of coronavirus and come out the other side set up for success—as much as humanly possible. 

We are actively monitoring the coronavirus and its impact on all our clients across B2B, travel & tourism, higher education, healthcare & wellness, and more. We will update this blog post periodically to reflect any changes in our approach over the coming weeks.