Five Voices Of Assurance And Optimism For Navigating COVID-19

I’ve been hosting livestream shows (“Simulmedia Live”) for Simulmedia since the summer of 2019 and have had the privilege of talking to some awfully smart people from top brands, agencies, cable networks, and the investing community. Ever since we’ve started working from home, though, we’ve featured guests who I like to refer to as a “Been there, gotten through that” crowd. These are men and women who operate from a principled position. They don’t react to crisis. They’ve got their own playbooks for how to make better decisions when times get tough.

I wanted to call attention to five that I found particularly inspiring. Don’t take my word for it, though. My mother, no media expert herself, has been watching and came away feeling better about the world after seeing what these individuals had to say.

1. Bob Liodice, President of the Association of National Advertisers, and Dave Morgan, CEO of Simulmedia

Bob and Dave were among the first people to call on brands to become helpful. As Bob put it, now is the time for “story-doing,” as opposed to story-telling.

2. Eric and Anna Olson of Central Coast Distillery

This husband-wife duo operate a small batch, award winning distillery in California. Their Forager brand of spirits is known for producing only the purest alcohol. They’ve turned that relentless focus on quality into a silky, boozy-smelling, virus-annihilating hand sanitizer. Eric and Anna are distributing it to their local fire and departments to keep their first responders safe.

3. Bill Harvey, media research pioneer

A disciple of media planning legend Erwin Ephron, Bill knows that brands that pivot their message and continue advertising in tough times (if they can) not only do good for their customers. They position themselves to grow faster once the crisis has passed.

4. Meryl Draper, CEO of Quirk Creative

Brands need help striking the right advertising tone, especially during a crisis. They must be authentic. They must not be exploitative. And in this case, they need to adjust their message during a time when creative agencies aren’t doing live shoots. Meryl Draper’s award-winning agency is helping brands navigate this tricky balance. It’s just the sort of solution-orientation that we need right now.

5. Jeff Jarvis, CUNY’s Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism

Jeff has the look and fire of a 19th century preacher, and he’s directing his energy toward reminding advertisers of news organizations’ importance. He passionately argues for brands not to pull their advertising from the news, especially when those organizations need the revenue to fund the news. He’s absolutely right.

All of our Simulmedia Live guests have something important to say. To view content from our complete archive, visit our video page.

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