How Much Should You Talk About COVID-19 in Your Marketing?

These are truly unprecedented times. The past few months have significantly changed the way we do business, interact with our customers, and run campaigns.

Even if you had a solid marketing plan at the beginning of the year, it is strongly recommended to revisit it today to ensure that your messaging is relevant and appropriate. With COVID-19 dominating the conversations both online and offline, businesses are wondering how much they should be talking about the pandemic.

As this is unfamiliar territory for everyone, there really is no playbook. To help you navigate through this new business climate, we have put together a checklist for reviewing and revising your current digital marketing strategy.

Understand your audience

Whether or not you pivot significantly from your marketing plan depends on the current situation of your customers. Understanding the circumstances and concerns of your target audience can help you develop messaging that is honest and relatable.

For instance, Dove Canada created a campaign titled ‘courage is beautiful’ that showed the faces of healthcare workers working on the frontlines. The brand also announced that it is donating personal care products to healthcare workers. This shows how the brand pivoted from its ‘real beauty’ message to effectively weave COVID-19 messaging into its marketing communications activities.

So, as the situation continues to evolve, the key to talking about COVID-19 is understanding how it is affecting your customers and how your campaign can help them.

What’s your product or service?

Transparency and honesty are crucial for effective communication during COVID-19. If your product or service is something that can save lives, make life easier, or help your customers in any way during the pandemic, you can highlight that through your social media platforms.

For instance, when it comes to web marketing, a medical device company, can actively share product information and answer customer questions related to COVID-19 by engaging medical professionals. Similarly, an office furniture retailer can share ideas for creating a work from home space. Ultimately the focus should be on creating content that adds value.

Provide relevant information

There is no shortage of COVID-19 facts online. So, to cut through the noise, as marketing consultants, we recommend including COVID-19 in your messaging only when it’s relevant.

For instance, if you run an eCommerce business and are expecting delays in shipping or delivery times, convey that to your customers. You can be honest about the struggles your team or company is going through right now. Remember, authenticity can be a great brand element, and communicating honestly with your customers can help maintain and even strengthen long-term relationships.

For B2C businesses, this is the time to create informative, reassuring and encouraging content. Depending on who your audience is, some ideas could be breakfast recipes for busy parents, craft ideas for kids, and bodyweight exercises for fitness enthusiasts.

Social listening is more important than ever 

As the situation continues to evolve, organizations have to focus on understanding their customers’ sentiments. You can use Voice of the Customer (VoC) programs and social tools to listen for references to COVID-19 and recognize what your customers would like to know and how you can help.

Being able to understand these sentiments will help you create better content; content that is truly relevant, engaging, and not tone-deaf.

So, when it comes to marketing during a pandemic, remember that the key is to be adaptable. You don’t have to know everything. Post and monitor the results to see what type of content your audience responds to.

Find your balance. Don’t ignore the realities around you but don’t let COVID-19 overwhelm your content so much that it is in every single post, ad, or share.

At Pulsion Marketing, we can help you review your current digital marketing campaigns to ensure that your content stays relevant and engaging. Reach out to us today to speak to a marketing consultant and to learn more about our programs!

For up-to-date information about COVID-19 in Canada, please visit