9 Types of Advertisements You've Seen During COVID-19
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9 Types of Advertisements You've Seen During COVID-19

How companies are trying to make you know you want what they're selling in this time of uncertainty.

9 Types of Advertisements You've Seen During COVID-19

I think we can all agree that most things about our lives have changed as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, and the ensuing economic crash continues to change them even more. Sourcing stories throughout this time is something that is keeping me sane and my increased time on the web has exposed me to more than what I initially searched. Corporations and small-businesses alike have had to adapt their business practices as well as their advertising strategies to reflect our turbulent communal experience. Let's take a look together at some of the different appeals and promises advertisers have been making as I think it illuminates our common anxieties, wants, and needs alike.

Let's get closer.


We all wish we could give our friends and far away loved ones a hug. Sonic knows this and reiterates this in their tagline of their new ad when they proudly promise "at a time when everyone feels so far apart, families can still keep their distance, together" at their drive-in restaurants. Airbnb does the same in their newsletter announcing the launch of their new online "community" where through workshops we can "try something new together".

Words we miss.


Similar to the title of first category, words relating to the world before quarantine such as "open", "close", and "together" are powerful tools for promising consumers the feelings of an open society and the joys that come with it. Companies have sprung up in the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic with names such as Openwestand.org, aiming towards business owners missing the joy of turning their open sign, as their most recent ad shows.

Let's get ethical.


Most of us reading this right now (or writing it) are in a comfortable, although inconvenient situation and acknowledge many others have it worse. While donating to nonprofits distributing resources is a no-brainer, companies have been attempting to play the role of internet ethical road sign and direct you to the "right" thing to do when you're feeling so ineffectual. Etsy states in their newest ad campaign that to stand with Etsy is to #standwithsmall business owners who are taking an economic hit. Ten Thousand Villages reiterates twice daily in my inbox that buying through them is supporting impoverished international communities.

We will accommodate.


The same way we've had to adapt, so have our local restaurants, stores, and services. Many of them are letting us know that they're keeping up with the changing times right along with us. You've probably seen the Cadillac ads letting you know they can deliver a luxury car instead of you having to pick it up, as well as provide flexible financing options.

We're online!


As I previously mentioned, Airbnb announced the launch of their transition for the time being of having "hosts" (users who rent out their homes short-term on the site) now run virtual workshops for subscribers. Other companies have similarly made the switch from offering in-person services to virtual, in order to adapt to our new way of being. Recently, I have been receiving advertisements for universities who now offer full online course lists.

Respiratory health is on our mind.


As a smoker, I am accustomed to the more-than-occasional targeted "Truth" or "Above the Influence" advetisements but recently I've been seeing several commercials for drugs that offer hope for those who suffer from asthma for improved lung health. It's most likely not a coincidence that the companies have good reason to hope that those that suffer from less-than-perfect lung health are nervous right now.

Things will be back to normal soon.


The bottom line of everything we are feeling right now is that we want things to return to the way they were before Covid. That's not to say that we're learning a lot of big lessons right now we should take into our open society, but we do want things to be open. Every time I click a video on Youtube I am greeted with ticketing websites reminding me things will eventually open and events will be held. A comforting message, and a ticket for an August concert seems like a guarantee of normalcy, even if it may not be.

We feel scared and vulnerable.


On the darker side of things, the National Rifle Association is moving to push fear and paranoia as well as prejudicial images of disability as weakness in order to agitate the already fearful public into purchasing firearms. The NRA was early to jump on the wave of apocalyptic fears about empty shelves and angry militias to urge people to stock up on guns and ammunition. A dangerous message to be sending when we are, in fact, very emotionally vulnerable as a collective society.

We all just want to relax.


Etsy's most recent newsletter to their online subscribers comes with the heading: "6 Soothing Stay at Home ideas" with attached products that they promise will help "cultivate a greater sense of calm at home". We all want those nagging feelings of worry to dissipate while we're cooped up at home and online stores hope you'll achieve that with some virtual retail therapy.

Some of the companies I mentioned are in fact good places to be using your purchasing power, such Etsy and Ten Thousand Villages where you can support talented independent artisans. Others are utilizing more unsettling parts of our emotional reactions to the current health crisis to further their less than ethical agendas. Let us all stay aware, weary, and virtually close.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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