To advertise or not to advertise during a global crisis, that is the question (of the moment).
As COVID-19 continues to inflict damage on our citizens and our economy, I’ve read all different reactions and responses to the “advertising” question. Some opinions I’ve agreed with and some I have not, and I’m sure many of you have fallen somewhere in the middle.
Regardless of where you’ve landed on the debate spectrum, I have one thing to say to you today: Document everything anyway.
You can decide not to advertise right now; here’s what you can’t do. You can’t go back in time. Everything that your organization is dealing with right now, everything you’re doing or choosing not to do, it has value.
I feel a need to hit all caps on this point. So, here we go, one more time.
IT HAS VALUE.
Your livelihood, your life, your business, your family everything you are experiencing this second it is relatable, and it has an emotional center. And if you’re not taking time to capture it and store it away, trust me you are going to regret it. As Pretty Woman Julie Roberts once said — Big mistake! Big! Huge!
I know many businesses (particularly small organizations) are in survival mode. But in two weeks, three months, six months, perhaps a year from now, the COVID-19 pandemic will end. You’re going to look up, and it will all be over. Instead of posting articles about how to work remotely and how to make masks out of baby-bibs, we as a collective society will be working on inching our way back to a sense of pre-COVID normalcy.
I promise you when that time comes, and your company is thinking about how to move forward, someone is going to blurt out in the middle of a random marketing meeting, “Did we record any of that?”
We live in an incredible country. The people make America great, and we’ve seen that on display for the last month. I’ve watched businesses offering their services for free, consultants giving away coaching sessions, gyms offering free online classes, heck… Mark Cuban was tossing out his insights to anyone willing to just sit on the computer for an hour and read.
Companies large and small are donating time, services and funds to help fight this pandemic (the virus itself and the economic toll it takes).
So here is my advice to you today.
You may not have a plan to advertise right now. You may not have a marketing plan for this
moment at all.
It doesn’t matter.
Pick up your phone and hit record. Take pictures. Do Facebook Lives. Stay involved in a
positive and relevant way and document everything. If you’re not sure how to approach something, send me an email. I’m happy to help. Post social distancing mandate, hire a professional production team to do on-sight interviews and gather additional visuals.
So when this crisis ends (and it will end), you have materials to help construct powerful pieces of creative. That’s one decision you’ll never regret.