Dr. Sujata Khanda
Marketing, Amity University, Noida, Uttar Pradesh, India
The year 2020 will be a milestone year for generations to come and it will be remembered by all as the year that created havoc and caused major upheavals leading to a paradigm shift not only in the way we live but also in the way we conduct business. The global Covid-19 pandemic is exacting a terrible human toll and menacing the world economy. The consequences of the pandemic are unprecedented and it is impacting the world economy and bringing in its wake a paradigm shift in the world of business and marketing.
Globally, all businesses have evidenced a direct impact on account of the virus and this has brought about a dramatic shift in the market behaviors of both buyers and marketers. As a result, the marketing and branding of products and services have undergone a sea-change. In the post-COVID-19 era, traditional exchange and communication processes in the marketplace would be less relevant calling for new business designs and models that are functional, viable, responsible, and sustainable.
Branding is one sphere in the domain of marketing that has risen to the occasion and has assumed a mantle of purpose and responsibility. During this period, brands worked to inspire us and appealed to us to be grateful. They urged us to do whatever we can to fight the pandemic – follow home quarantine rules, help the elderly, spend time with family, and just do our bit by staying indoors and spreading positivity. In addition, there were brands that persuaded us to be grateful to all the people out there putting their lives at risk to ensure that we are safe and have all that is required during these trying times. These are people like doctors, health care workers, shop keepers, security guards, food delivery personnel, sanitation workers, etc. We saw Volkswagen tell us to ‘Respect the people working out there for us’. Dove thanked those frontline workers and said their ‘courage is beautiful;’ and Coca Cola launched a beautiful film thanking the human race for filling the glass with kindness and hope.
Therefore, the new imperative is to look into marketing and branding through a philosophical perspective and humane angle beyond mere profit-making and sales exercises.
Relevant Links: www.amity.edu