‘Our job is to sell’: Marketers, moving past coronavirus response, return to selling products

The coronavirus presented society with two intertwined crises: a health crisis and an economic crisis. On the first front, some companies scrambled to reorient supply chains to provide protective gear, like masks, or disinfectant. But for most companies, marketing meant putting out messages of support. On the economic crisis, which is now taking center stage as economies haltingly reopen in the face of forecasts of a downturn unseen since the Great Depression, marketers have a clearer role: Sell stuff. With that clarity of purpose, marketers are starting to realize they need to move on from the messages of support, according to the agency and marketing executives I’ve spoken with recently. The shift back to advertising products rather than messages of support is starting to happen.

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