Study: Half Of Brand Marketers Felt Dissatisfied With Their COVID-19 Responses

Roughly half of brand marketers during the pandemic reported feeling “paralyzed”  about how to engage consumers or were dissatisfied with their efforts, according to a survey commissioned by Forsman & Bodenfors, part of MDC Partners. 

The other half of the 100 senior brand managers polled (by research firm GLG) said they were satisfied with their brands’ response and messaging during the crisis. 

The research suggests the rapid shifts in consumer behavior brought on by the pandemic favored more resilient brands.

In the first two months of the pandemic, adults increased smartphone usage by an estimated 70% and increased time spent with media by 10%, according to eMarketer. 

Going silent isn’t a viable option, the agency asserted, pointing to Ipsos data estimating the cost to address declines in brand equity are typically two times that of reducing short-term brand investment.  

“Brands have a lot to gain by finding their voice during these uncertain times,” said Steve Gorski, strategy director, Forsman & Bodenfors New York. “The moment to develop a relevant narrative for your brand is now.”  



To help brands assess their current level of resilience and update their marketing initiatives, Forsman & Bodenfors has developed a “Resilience Scorecard” based on eight cultural shifts observed during the pandemic, including the growing tension between frugality and consumerism, the need for more creativity, transparency as a mandate and the emergence of the community over the individual.  

See more about the research and the agency’s recommendations and case studies here.



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