The coronavirus crisis has put unprecedented strain on brands across the UK. From introducing emergency KPIs and struggling to maintain supply chains to simply keeping the wheels of business turning, the challenges have been extensive.
Now, as we emerge from lockdown and companies fight for survival, could marketing effectiveness play a vital role in the recovery? Crucially, will marketers resist the urge to return to the ROI-driven mentality that characterised the 2008 recession?
At the onset of the pandemic, brands were forced to manage their expectations. Head of insight, research, planning and performance at TSB, Justin Bell, saw sales targets shift in line with the consumer response, which he recognised was down to the context and not marketing being any less effective.
“We were thinking ‘The goalposts have moved’ and we thought about it less in terms of sales and more about brand behaviours. Customer care trumps sales targets in the thick of a crisis. We weren’t alone, lots of banks came out with reassuring messages for their customers,” says Bell.