The core value of advertising is trust! The cliche “now more than ever” is overused and overdone and in general gets glossed over, so why use it here and why does it matter now? Simple, when people can find a beacon of trust during uncertain types (read CoronaVirus, Economy Collapse) you can earn their loyalty as the “friend that helped them in a time of need”.
During crisis time, people are stingy with their wallets, stingy with their resources, especially during an epidemic that doesn’t have a foreseeable end, or rather, an unknown resolution date.
The most similar situation can probably be the Great Depression (1929-1933) almost 100 years ago, a major time of resources and spending turned to an absolute minimum. There were 5 champions during this time, most notably Procter and Gamble, who tore down the shroud of selling via supermarkets and revealed their name to the public broadcasts, sponsoring shows and making them into the Procter and Gamble that we know and appreciate today. Ever hear of “soap operas” or why its called that, its because these shows were sponsored by soap companies!
Back to 2020, the champions of coronavirus will take the same route.
We live in a world where trust is hard to come by. Every opinion has a counter opinion and every fact has an alternative fact. The wonder of the internet and the exposure to everyone’s opinion and that means political figures, newspapers, media outlets, companies, and anything anybody posts anywhere, are under the microscope of authenticity, accuracy, and legitimacy.
The downside to the internet is that opinions and facts can be distorted as well to the point of as long as you get a following towards your cause. The joke on the internet about how people will follow “Karen on Facebook” instead of scientists about a clear scientific subject. (No offense to the Karens out there).
So the internet’s double edge sword brings the opportunity to stay above water and build and maintain a reputable, strong, and honest, loyalty, and most importantly, a trustworthy company.
How do we do that?
One of the internet influencers I follow is Alpha Investments, a collectable card game investor who follows market trends and gives a certain sense of nostalgia for long time players.
Why do I trust him? Unlike other businesses who encourage to buy buy buy, Rudy (owner of the company) gives you business and marketing advice with no expectation. Sure, he makes some money on YouTube but that’s not coming out of my pocket. Most recently, as he earns money on patreon, advising potential new customers to only invest if they can afford it, don’t risk things you can’t afford, even for a hobby, to take care of yourself first. This isn’t one video, it’s every video. This makes an impact, this builds a rapport, and this makes me want to trust him with my business.
So What’s The Core Value Of Advertising?
It comes down to providing value and befriending your clients.
Make some videos that don’t sell anything specific, but bring value.
Write some articles that bring value to your market.
Share content about the ongoing situation and how it relates to them.
Procter and Gamble knew that the Great Depression wouldn’t last forever, and they knew when buying power returned to the world the champions would be those with a name, a name that can be trusted to deliver the high quality products.