Companies all over the world are doing their part to help out during the coronavirus outbreak. In addition to offering resources and contributing to important causes, brands are also altering their imagery and messaging to help promote safety and unity (in spirit).
Below, we take a look at how well-established companies such as McDonald’s, Chiquita Banana, and Coca-Cola are encouraging social distancing through their logos and taglines.
McDonald’s was one of the first brands to respond to the crisis through their social media accounts. McDonald’s Brazil posted an image of their famous logo on their Facebook page but with a surprise twist: the famous golden arches were pulled apart.
The message behind the separated arches was clear: McDonald’s Brazil wanted to encourage social distancing. The post also came with the following caption (translated from Portuguese): “Separated for a moment so that we can always be together.”
In a different attempt, McDonald’s India shared a GIF that acknowledged the current climate by promoting its McDelivery option. It was accompanied by the following caption (that won fans’ hearts): “There’s no distancing from your favorite food! It’s why we’ve taken every measure to ensure that your favorite food reaches you in a safe and contactless manner.”
Burger King UK announced that it’s temporarily shuttering its stores with an altered physical store logo. Their social media caption? “We’ll be back, but for now…”
In the current climate, even the “First Lady” of fruits works from home — just like we do! Chiquita Brands International company posted a version of its famous blue label logo without Miss Chiquita saying, “I’m already home. Please do the same and protect yourself.”
Coca Cola has created a lot of posts around social distancing on social media. Using the classic Coca Cola bottle, the brand wanted to thank all of the hard-working professionals as well as remind everyone to stay home.
Coca Cola also went the extra mile with their offline advertising. They recently ran a billboard ad on Times Square that featured its brand name — typically written in tightly connected Spencerian script — with extended spaces between letters. The logo is accompanied by the message, “Staying apart is the best way to stay connected.”
Jure Tovrljan, a Slovenia-based creative director, has used his graphic design skills to revamp famous brands’ logos to make them more relevant for the coronavirus era. The Starbucks logo now features a mermaid wearing a protective mask; Nike’s slogan has become “Don’t Do It;” the colorful Olympics rings are pulled apart to promote social distancing, and LinkedIn has transformed into, “LinkedOut.”
On the sharing site Dribbble, Tovrljan explained, “Just an idea of how logos should look like in these difficult times. Hang in there, guys. Stay home.”
What Does That Mean for Other Brands? Should You Do Something Similar?
With more and more brands wanting to bring attention to social distancing and making announcements on how they’re doing their part against the spread of the coronavirus, social media is full of COVID-19 related content.
As consumers start to think about how they can limit their budgets, your brand presence, along with your social media efforts, may make the difference you need in order to thrive during these uncertain times.
If you decide to go ahead and participate in this dialogue:
- Focus on your own brand and actions. Avoid taking a political stance, giving medical or legal recommendations or even commenting on other brands’ decisions on how they operate during the COVID-19 period.
- Give back to the community. Ask yourself: “Is there a way to give back to the community or the people who have supported you so far?” An act of goodwill can go a long way.
- Be mindful of how you position your announcement or any promotional offer. You need to make sure your actions aren’t perceived as an indirect way to sell.
- Put an emphasis on customer retention efforts. Focus on creating conversations and building relationships rather than sales and acquiring new customers in the short-term.
- Double-check everything. Check all your scheduled posts and make sure the content is appropriate, and the copy is relevant.
- Be present. Your customers are looking for ways to be social, to connect with others and even to be distracted from everything that’s going on. Consider doing a Facebook or Instagram live stream, sharing team WFH photos, or exploring a new type of content on social media to refresh your strategy.