COVID killed our creativity

January 1, 2020 marked the beginning of a brand-new decade, with chief hopes we looked forward to a chance on fresh life. Now, three months in and we are wondering if this year could get any worse. Blazing bushfires in Australia, Brexit, plane crash in Tehran and to top all that we even lost Kobe in a helicopter crash but probably nothing worse than the COVID19 pandemic.

Face-to-face meetings for brainstorming between creative directors, account leaders, and a few other representatives from marketing and advertising agencies are over. Imposing social distancing, to prevent the spread of the coronavirus in the world, eliminated most of our regular interactions.

For some, the absence of these regular interactions have seen an increase in the performance of their daily work. We no longer have a colleague coming over every couple of minutes asking the same bloody question. Is this newfound performance allowing us to deliver some of the most creative content to our clients? Well… not yet.

They say there is always a first time for everything and well, this is our first time of a pandemic for everyone. Never (in our modern times) have we seen a far-reaching world event that had an impact in almost every single industry known to man. As a collective we are still unsure what to do or how are we supposed to act; we are coming up with solutions on the go and ultimately we are still all freaking* confused.

The result? Everything seems too standard, almost as if Miss Rona killed our creativity. Big brands are going their way trying to reassure their audiences that “we are here for you” and that “we are in this together” delivering all those feel good moments in a single video. Don’t believe me? Have a look at the video edit we found.    

So what happens next? We as creatives need to go beyond the big brand “reassuring” message. I have yet to meet someone who feels “comforted” from a car manufacturer selling the idea that they have been with us “through thick and thin”.

Let’s just face it, we are all bored at home. As difficult as it may seem, we creatives, need to think how this pandemic will be forever changing the way we work. We can no longer assume that creating sympathetic messages for the masses will make everything better.

We need to generate creative strategies that deliver actual value to our audiences. It is time for brands to capitalize on creating “how to guides” or rethink fresh ways we can use our products; what the heck! lets develop an entire new offering in response to the crisis.

It is not a matter of keeping ahead of our times, but understanding the current situation and devise our plans to engage in meaningful ways. This way we will create future proof relationships with actual people who are suffering the brunt of the pandemic.