Let’s just say it – this is all very scary and overwhelming. It feels as though everything we knew was upended in a matter of weeks and no one has the crystal ball that tells us when we can go back to normal, or even what the new normal looks like.
It is a time to find gratitude for what we have in our lives and to focus on the good. It can be helpful to look at what we can and cannot control. As business owners, we can and need to control our brands and messages. Now more than ever is the time to communicate with customers and employees. They are looking to you for leadership and solutions. Some questions to ask at this time:
- Is coronavirus impacting my customers or clients and, if so, can I help them?
- Will my customers’ priorities shift as a result of the current climate and, if so, how should my content change to reflect that?
- Does coronavirus impact our product/service offering and, if so, how can we communicate that to our customers?
- What, if anything, can my business do to help the community?
- What will the recovery look like for your business?
Now is the time to start thinking about what your messaging will be during the recovery.
Here is some good news that is worthy of PR in this climate. VERC Enterprises, a family-owned business which operates 30+ convenience stores, gas stations and several car washes throughout MA and NH, recently offered bonuses of between $200 and $500 for its nearly 400 employees, while also raising the wages of hourly employees by $2 and the salaries of store managers by $100 a week. Leo Vercollone said he believes it’s the right thing to do to thank his front-line workers for their extra help during the crisis.
Jack Doherty, the owner and president of College Hype, wanted to do something to help the healthcare professionals who are battling COVID-19. Since their trade is printing and marketing t-shirts, he and his team brainstormed and came up with the idea to market a t-shirt and use the proceeds to help the healthcare workers in the region. They came up with the perfect name for the campaign – Resilience – and the perfect URL: resilience2020.us. The company has been printing t-shirts by the thousands. Doherty says they’ve already raised $10,000 for the two hospitals they are supporting in this effort: South Shore Healthcare (South Shore Hospital) and Boston Medical Center. His goal is to double that figure.
There are definitely still hard days ahead, but we’re hopeful for the future. And in the meantime, we’re doing all we can to help businesses and organizations communicate and stay strong, as well as prepare for the future. And we’ll continue to share your good news. After all, we need it now more than ever. Stay well!
South Shore Chamber of Commerce COVID-19 Business Resources
blumshapiro COVID-19 Business Resources
Marketing And Communications During The Pandemic
PR Positively!!! Issue 1 – 4/7/20
PR Positively!!! Issue 2 – 4/14/20
PR Positively!!! Issue 3 – 4/21/20
PR Positively!!! Issue 4 – 4/28/20