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The Eye of the Storm
By: Janet Kalandranis
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Relevancy and timeliness are key topics for brands, especially in today’s super-engaged and connected world. Brands also need to understand what information and support customers want in order to provide that relevant news. It’s also important for brands to be connected and understand what information they can capitalize on so customers feel they are a number-one priority…especially when a storm is about to hit.

Rewind to 2011, when multiple major storms hit the eastern seaboard and many lost power for days...even weeks. Brands were literally cut off from customers within hours with no plan for how to connect and deliver important information during a trying time. This includes brands like power, lighting, cable/internet companies and restaurants, grocery stores, and many more. Imagine in this super-connected world being completely cut off, with communication almost impossible.

Fast-forward to today, with Hurricane Sandy “bothering” the east coast again. Yet the story for many brands is much different. Having learned from last year’s situation, many brands have planned ahead and are arming customers with information they may need. Other brands are using the storm to capitalize on a reason for a purchase or product. Either way, the content or message is timely and relevant and brands are staying top-of-mind with their customers. There are emails about procedures regarding outages, numbers to call, and proper guidelines to follow. In addition, customers are seeing messaging about what to do during the storm, what to buy, and how to keep their families entertained.

These strategies aren’t new to brands, but the timing is much more on-target than it has been in the past. Brands have learned from the past, understand what customers want/need, and are actively giving them this information. Those brands that planned for situations like these and are able to take action are going to create stronger engagement with customers. And once the storm clears, customers are going to remember which brands helped them through and forget those that got lost in the rain.

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About the Author
Janet Kalandranis is here to give you all the little brand thoughts that run through her head with a little dash of spice. Find her online here.
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