Over the past nine weeks, we’ve been blown away by the strong messages of support and emotive sentiments of some of the world’s biggest brands in their responses to the coronavirus pandemic. As we launch our new website and refreshed branding, we thought we would each pay tribute to the campaigns, creative, and strategies we’ve loved the most as a team and individually. We want to shine a light on the brands that have captured our hearts and our imaginations in the best ways during a worldwide societal shift. Read our first instalment here and follow us on social to stay tuned for the rest of Team Cracked’s favourites.

UBER – THANK YOU FOR NOT RIDING WITH US

I think this is such a selfless advert, and communicates real empathy for the situation. This emotional video campaign offers gratitude to customers for not using Uber during the pandemic. While Uber is still operational, the company has asked riders to restrict trips to essential travel only, and to travel alone or only with members of their household. To a salesman, it would be madness, but to the viewer and marketeers like me, it’s a heartfelt plea — and it makes this brand memorable in a time that will be forever etched on the memories of the billions of people who are experiencing it. It will have a long-lasting impact on the brand as a statement of how it positioned itself during the pandemic. Let’s face it, Uber hasn’t had the best press over the past few years, however I think this strong emotive message may have gone some way in rectifying that.

ZOE, CLIENT SERVICES

MALTESERS – ISOLATION LIFE

Maltesers’ ‘Isolation Life’ campaign follows the same set of friends through their hilarious virtual catchups, each with their own theme. It’s a fantastically relatable message, with each character connecting with someone we all know, love, and miss in our own social circles. Maltesers as a brand is no stranger to adding some cheekiness to its TV ads, and this series is no exception. And while it’s nothing ground-breaking, this campaign gives us a much-needed laugh while still managing to add in a lot of heart to each episode with the ‘We’ll get through this. #stayhome’ message.

LUCY, COPY & CONTENT CREATION

SHEESH RESTAURANT – FREE FOOD FOR KEY WORKERS 

For those of you who’ve been to Chigwell’s Sheesh restaurant, you’ll know it’s all glitz and glamour, and perfect for the off-duty celeb spot, but their response to the situation was so far from the world of celebrity spotting, and instead very genuine and real. I adore Dylan, Sheesh owner, and his wife, Entertainment Manager Rochelle for delivering 1000 meals a day for free to NHS workers. They aren’t just delivering locally, they’re up and down the country and have recently gone beyond delivering to solely NHS staff to include other key workers from Fire People and those working within care homes. Their Instagram covers every drop-off they make, posts the feedback and comments, and shares stories from the key workers themselves. It’s really lovely to see and makes me a little emotional.

NATALIE, CLIENT SERVICES

NIKE – PLAY INSIDE, PLAY FOR THE WORLD

Nike has taken a massively effective, engaging approach, asking their audience to stay home and ‘Play for the World.’ As a part of this campaign, Nike has shared various challenges to encourage exercise at home (even better if you’re wearing the brand), enlisting sport stars such as Virgil Van Dijk to participate and incentivise others to beat their personal bests. All to crown a deserving winner of the coveted Living Room Cup!

JOE, CLIENT SERVICES

VIRGIN MEDIA – STAY HOME, STAY SAFE, STAY CONNECTED

This TV and digital campaign from Virgin Media is definitely one of my favourites. It’s more upbeat than most others, but remains on-brand to highlight the importance of ‘staying connected’ while you’re doing everything and anything from home — from playing the drums to playing with drones! I especially like the way they turn the negative into something positive. The ‘we’re all in this together’ message helps people feel as though we can all get through this if we stay positive and stay connected, with a nod to Clap for Our Carers. Love it!

LEIGH, CREATIVE DESIGN

PRET – FREE COFFEE & 50% OFF FOR NHS WORKERS

Pret took the decision to close all of their UK locations ahead of lockdown as a nod to keeping their team members and customers safe while they worked out their approach. After a few weeks, they picked 10 locations close to hospitals so that they could give free coffee and a 50% discount on all other products to NHS workers and produce enough food to create a significant donation to channel back to their partners through the Pret Foundation. I loved everything about this; it’s generosity, the authenticity behind the story, and the use of the heart in the creative.

JO, EXECUTIVE ASSISTANCE

Are any of our favourites on your list? There are many more that we’ll be sharing in the next instalment, so click the icons in our footer to follow us on social and stay updated. We know times are tough right now, but we’re hoping for a bright future for everyone involved in our wonderful industry. If you’d like to chat about our blog, or how you might need support in evolving your marketing and approach to fit the new normal then let us know. We really are in this together.