Over the last few months, COVID-19 has taken the world by storm, impacting just about everything in its path – people, businesses, the economy, the world’s toilet paper supply – the list goes on.
Sanitizing, self-isolating, and social distancing are the new norm and while some companies have scrambled to ensure their employees have VPN access to work from home, others have stepped up and taken ownership during this trying time by finding creative ways to address the coronavirus head-on.
So, while there are plenty of lists tracking cancelled events and business closures worldwide, here’s a list noticeably missing from the conversation: a lineup of brands that have emerged as pandemic pacesetters, spreading positivity among consumers, staying visible among their audiences, and making it easier – and safer – to live through the outbreak.
A globally recognized lifestyle magazine with a distinctive voice, Time Out is a must-read publication for those seeking recommendations on a city’s best bars, restaurants, music gigs, arts and culture scene, and more.
With the rise of self-isolation due to the coronavirus, Time Out – recognizing it would be inappropriate to offer its usual city-wide suggestions – decided to change its name and logo to Time In for the foreseeable future. Now, instead of reporting on the best places to go out, the magazine is writing about future travel opportunities to look forward to, museums you can visit virtually, and ways to stay connected to your favorite places in every city. Already craving your favorite pastelito? They’ll give you the inside scoop on how to get your favorite local treats delivered to your door, so you never have to go a day without.
A company that has transformed our lives countless times, Google has not disappointed. As the world lives in widespread isolation and cabin fever and boredom start to set in, Google has yet again raised the bar, partnering with over 2,500 museums and galleries around the world to offer virtual tours of their spaces.
From the MOMA in New York to the Louvre in Paris, art lovers can now safely get their cultural fix. Not only is Google helping sustain an industry that relies heavily on daily visitors as part of its revenue stream, it’s helping keep museums top of mind, subconsciously spreading a desire amongst the public to revisit and support these museums when it’s safe to do so in the future.
As one of Ireland’s most iconic brands, Guinness accounts for a spike in sales every year around St. Patrick’s Day. This year however, the famous stout brand faced a somber reality as the coronavirus shut down bars, pubs, restaurants, and other public spaces globally. While they could have focused on the negative, Guinness rose to the occasion, using their social and digital platforms to encourage people to stay home on St. Patrick’s Day.
The company crafted a video campaign to remind consumers that “on St. Patrick’s Day we are all Irish, but let’s not forget that every day, we are all human,” emphasizing that in order to celebrate together in the future we need to protect each other now. The inspiring campaign also stated that, “When you raise a pint of Guinness, also remember to raise each other up,” as a reminder to everyone to continue to spread positivity through the challenges the world is facing. In order to spread kindness and relief as a business, Guinness took one step further and has donated $500,000 to support the communities in the U.S. where “we live, work and celebrate”, €1.5 million to aid bar staff and elderly citizens in Ireland, and another £1 million to support bartenders across the United Kingdom.
Cognizant of the fact that their famous, user-proclaimed ‘Netflix and chill’ slogan wasn’t coined by sitting around alone, Netflix partnered with Google Chrome to create an extension called ‘Netflix Party.’ Through the new app, subscribers can adhere to social-distancing rules by watching Netflix remotely – with others.
This means movie nights with a special someone or binge watching tv shows with your friends is still on the table – you’ll just be in different houses. The best part? The app synchronizes video playback and adds group chat, so no one can reach a juicy cinematic moment before you, and the usual commentary you’ve come to love and expect from your friends will still be available to enhance your viewing experience.
Amazon Twitch x BandsInTown
Everyone in the working world is feeling the effects of the coronavirus outbreak; but arguably one of the most at-risk groups are smaller musicians and bands who totally rely on touring and the gig economy for their income. With all musical events either postponed or cancelled, this means that musicians have no money coming in at all.
To lend a helping hand, Amazon’s Twitch – a live-streaming service typically used by gamers – has partnered with BandsInTown – an online platform that notifies fans of upcoming concerts. The idea is that Twitch will allow bands to use their platform to live-stream their concerts, and BandsInTown will notify fans of when these events will take place.
This partnership is a win-win for all; through Twitch, viewers can opt to donate small amounts of money to the band while watching the virtual concert, so performers can still make some income during the widespread quarantines and stay on their feet through this pandemic. And for fans who follow these bands and spend months planning and saving up to attend these concerts, they once again can experience and support their favorite musicians live even from afar.