Hats off to the market-leading brands that have shown true leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic. While we often look to the government or even cultural leaders for guidance and support, as of this writing, DCM has noted a number of companies that have stepped up and offered consumers real relief in these incredibly difficult times.
Canada’s big three telecom players have all worked quickly to ensure Canadians can continue to connect with one another when they need to most. Rogers, Bell, and Telus have all waived internet and data overage fees, as well as long-distance and roaming charges.
In the financial space, Canada’s big banks have recognized that many Canadians will be adversely affected by COVID-19. Scotiabank, CIBC, TD, RBC, BMO, and National Bank are all taking steps to offer consumers credit relief, including the deferral of mortgage payments for up to 6 months.
Virtual healthcare provider Maple is offering COVID-19 screening free of charge to all OHIP-covered Ontarians, enabling them to undergo screening safely at home.
Airbnb, meanwhile, is showing its mettle in the hard-hit travel industry by offering full refunds to consumers who are cancelling bookings, at no cost to Airbnb hosts.
The common denominator here is not only that these companies have shown that they care about their customers, but that they intuitively understand them. These brands are anticipating consumers’ needs and are meeting them—before consumers even have to ask.
Further, these companies are effectively communicating their messages. They understand that at a time like this, the number-one driver is relevance: The message must be meaningful to consumers.
Other brands may have similar good intentions, but they’re either unable to execute, or they overlook the fact that getting the message right—with the right tone and manner, through the appropriate channel—is critical to how it will be received.
Which might beg the question: How well are your favourite brands communicating with you?