COVID-19’s Personal and Professional Changes Part 1
April 30, 2020
Access Weekly JOYFLASH
May 8, 2020

COVID-19’s Personal and Professional Changes Part 2

In Part 1 of “Covid-19’s Personal and Professional Changes,” we discussed how this virus has affected our lives – no matter who you are, what you do, how you socialize, communicate, eat, love or what you worship. While there has been overwhelming loss and devastation, I believe the changes we’ve navigated and how we have adapted will improve our lives and business in many ways.

However, not all businesses and industries have navigated this period with grace and humanity.  During the past several weeks, we’ve all read stories and heard allegations on how a once beloved daytime talk show giant left her employees in the dark on whether they’ve been furloughed or laid off.  World famous amusement parks furloughing their entire 70,000 workforce despite massive yearly revenues.  Or media conglomerates laying off staffers despite the immense amount of reporting necessary and being consumed during this time.

However, through any devastation come the glorious fire poppies. If you’re not familiar, “fire poppies” are these spectacular red and orange poppies that bloom after a natural crisis – mainly stemming from wildfires.  Sadly, our friends in California are very familiar with them.  Though what makes these blooms so rare and beautiful is their resilience.  Literally and metaphorically a Phoenix, rising from the ashes.

You may not have noticed, but I guarantee you there have been thousands of these resilient poppies sprouting in your neighborhood since the economic devastation of COVID-19 began.  They just are taking different forms.  Here are a few examples:

  • Savvy restaurants turning into General Stores
  • Favorite bakeries selling flour, sugar and yeast instead of their famous finished goods
  • Famed fashion houses turning their couture gown operation into a medical masks and gown supply store
  • Local distilleries switching from making bottles of booze to half-pint hand sanitizer dispensers
  • Ventilators now crossing the lines versus finished cars

What these businesses (and brands) show us is that beautiful things can arise from a disaster.

It’s these small and larger businesses who have gone into Darwin-hyper speed that form an incredible bouquet of brands that will show us the way and hope for the future.  They will also maintain brand loyalty, consideration and will net a higher recommender score when we “go back to normal” – however that manifests itself.

At Access, we’re proud to represent some of these brands that have risen to the occasion and bloomed during this difficult time to promote hope and be in service of their customers.

Our client Intuit QuickBooks launched a small business relief fund with GoFundMe and Yelp! that has raised close to $10 million so far.  They also rallied to become an approved SBA lender within the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP).   They teamed up with Robert Herjavec (from the Emmy winning show Shark Tank) to explain to their customers and the public at large the ins and outs of what PPP means for small businesses.

The suspension of the NBA, MLB and NHL seasons has left millions desperate for pro sports content. Our client 2K has helped fill that void in several ways, but notably by hosting an NBA2K20 tournament on ESPN in April. 2K saw incredible engagement, gaining 38.3 M platform views – overjoying millions of thrilled fans who had missed competing and live events.

Our client Facebook has become the vital connective tissue between legions of small businesses and their customers while brick and mortar locations are closed – with tips on orders, delivery or ways to order gift cards to support Main Street. They’ve also become host to virtual family gatherings, including the many Passover Seders and Easter dinners that occurred in April.

These brands, clients, friends, champions among countless others have set the stage of what it means to be present, productive and proud during a time of unrest.  You can rest assured they will be there blooming when times are more stable.  For this, we thank them and are proud to be their partners.

By: Matt Afflixio, President