Brands pull together to assist in COVID-19 pandemic

CMO details the latest efforts by brands to add value at this time of uncertainty

Brands are continuing to pull together and offer added value to both customers and the community at large during the COVID-19 pandemic.

On top of the good work being done by brands like Unilever, and other brands summed up in our previous listicle, below CMO details the latest efforts by brands to add value at this time of uncertainty.

ViacomCBS Networks Australia

ViacomCBS Networks Australia has launched #InThisTogether, #AloneTogether and #KidsTogether campaign.  

Australian free-to-air and subscription brands, led by Network 10, MTV and Nickelodeon, launched their ’Together’ campaigns which focus on sharing health, safety and well-being messages during COVID-19. 

Creative executions of the campaigns include: Self-shot videos and live takeovers from celebrity and music talent across the brands; daily engagement through series’ social accounts, encouraging conversation and among fans; and original content, including animated and graphics-based, focused on health and social distancing. 

ViacomCBS Australia and New Zealand chief content officer and EVP, Beverley McGarvey, said its brands reach and influence many Australians every day. 

“In times like these, we have a clear duty to help however we can. The ‘Together’ campaigns are part of our contribution to educating and helping Australians during these uncertain times.

“Now is the time for every person and every business – in Australia and around the world – to work together and help each other.” 

Network 10’s #InThisTogether aligns with a similar campaign launched by CBS in the United States which features network talent recording videos, some from their own homes, providing reassurance and promoting togetherness during COVID-19. Talent featured in the promo include Carrie Bickmore, Lisa Wilkinson, Jonathan LaPaglia, Osher Günsberg, Miguel Maestre and Sarah Harris.

ViacomCBS Networks International’s entertainment and youth brands are also developing #AloneTogether content to be shared collectively to their more than 500 million social followers, communicating the public health message through their distinct brand voices.

ACM Newspapers

The 14 daily newspapers of publisher ACM all had front pages last week encouraging Australians to stay home. 

The front pages of The Canberra Times and key regional mastheads including the Newcastle Herald, Illawarra Mercury, The Border Mail, The Courier in Victoria and The Examiner in Tasmania feature visual message to highlight the critical role that every individual plays in the nation’s efforts to slow the spread of COVID-19 infections.

Under the headline 'In your hands' and a symbolic depiction of Australia, the newspapers implored their readers “for the sake of the country you love, now is the time to protect yourself and others” by following the official advice to stay home, practise social distancing and observe proper hand hygiene.

The message will also appear over the coming week in social media feeds and on the front pages of ACM’s other 150 local newspapers.

ACM chief executive officer, Allen Williams, said ACM’s local news sites and newspapers were connecting communities around the country to information they could trust and also had a role to play to help keep readers and their families safe.

“By following the official health advice every individual Australian can be doing their bit to help slow the spread of COVID-19, which in turn helps our frontline medical staff and ultimately saves lives,” he said. 

Order Up! & Bolt Bikes

Online ordering platform, Order Up! and mobility startup, Bolt Bikes are offering an immediate, cost-effective solution for Australia’s hospitality industry to stay operational during this time of uncertainty. 

With all pubs and restaurants in Australia forced to shut down and adopt a home delivery and takeaway option only, the Aussie startups have created an all-in-one menu ordering and delivery solution, which is easy to implement so businesses can get up and running for immediate service. 

Order Up! is an end-to-end solution which allows restaurants and cafes to manage their online ordering, payments and delivery logistics under their own brand. It is providing free setup and heavily reduced fees to get businesses started. 

Bolt Bikes provides an accessible, commission-free opportunity for businesses to provide their existing team with jobs as delivery riders.

To further support the wider community, Bolt has created a Bolt Jobs noticeboard, to directly connect its network of over 1000 delivery riders looking for more work with local businesses requiring delivery riders. The service is 100 per cent free to use, with Bolt creating it to solve an urgent need.


There has been a spike in the number of cafes and restaurants offering pick-up and delivery options as Aussie business owners and their local communities do everything they can to save venues and jobs hit hard by the impacts of coronavirus social distancing measures. 

Skip has responded to requests from venues and switched its business model to allow businesses to deliver food to customers themselves. By doing this they can maintain a profit but also potentially offer new opportunities to existing staff to perform a crucial role within the business.

Skip chief executive officer, Bill Bizos, said the community is rallying around their favourite cafes and restaurants who are fighting back against the Coronavirus by utilising existing waiters and baristas as delivery drivers in a bid to save jobs and keep their doors open following the recent restrictions on in-house service. 

As trips to crowded supermarkets with empty shelves become less and less appealing, many consumers are increasingly turning to take-away as a safe alternative to put food on the table as family members and housemates do all they can to follow health guidelines and stay indoors.

“Aussies in isolation are wanting to continue supporting their favourite local venues and have woken up to the fact that foreign-owned delivery services are charging businesses upwards of 35 per cent from every order. Where venues are switching to offering takeaway for the first time that type of fee directly cuts into their margin and will cost jobs,” Bizos said.

Junkee Media rebrands AWOL

Junkee Media has rebranded its travel title AWOL to ‘Activities Without Leaving’, providing the hundreds of thousands of Australians currently isolating in their homes with a range of indoor activities to help them get through this challenging time.

The new special edition of AWOL will focus on things Australians can do inside their home during the week, on weeknights, weekends, date nights and other times – and how to keep busy and productive mentally, physically and socially without having to leave the house.

“We’ll show you how to upskill, like learning how to use Photoshop or how to speak a new language,” Junkee Media publisher, Tim Duggan, said.

“The new AWOL will also guide you through ways to make your day better, including the best ways to exercise at home, how to master cooking, or even how women can reset their skin now that they’re wearing less makeup.”

“When we all emerge from our homes, the world will be unmistakably different. What we all care about most right now is getting to that point, and making the time we spend inside our houses and apartments with our partners, flatmates, family – or even by ourselves – as good as it can be,” he said.

The new-look AWOL will also be using Junkee Media and parent company oOh!media to amplify their messages, with key stories running across oOh!’s retail network.

“Every time you leave the house to get food or any other essential service, we’ll still be able to bring you some of AWOL’s most important messages,” he said.

Business Australia

Business Australia, a recently launched free membership organisation which is already supporting over 40,000 businesses across the country, has launched a campaign urging business owners and managers to seek support to help them navigate the COVID-19 pandemic.

The integrated campaign, devised and launched within a week by Six Black Pens and Chalk Co, is a pivot from Business Australia’s planned launch campaign to instead communicate the essential support businesses across Australia need during this crisis.

As part of this shift in creative, the new Business Australia website has been converted into a COVID-19 hub, full of free resources and advice for businesses to draw upon. The day of TVC airing saw the highest traffic to date on, with page views currently up 300 per cent since the launch of the COVID-19 hub just over a week ago.

Business Australia chief customer experience officer, Richard Spencer, said this is an incredibly challenging time for businesses in Australia. 

“In a matter of weeks, business owners’ have had their worlds turned upside down, and are facing untold economic, HR and legal challenges. We have adapted our marketing strategy to direct businesses to our dedicated COVID-19 hub to help them navigate the tough days ahead.

“We’re also proud to be working with a number of independently-owned Australian agencies as our partners in delivering this important message”.

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