Navigating Thailand’s Songkran as a Western Brand

Thailand’s Songkran Festival, or Water Festival, is considered Thai New Year and is a highly anticipated event symbolizing purification, renewal, and celebration. During Songkran, families unite for traditional customs like pouring scented water on Buddha statues and seeking blessings from elders, while vibrant street parties and water fights highlight the festival’s community spirit and often draw participation from travelers. 

The joyful atmosphere of Songkran presents a golden opportunity for Western brands to engage with Thai consumers and stand out in the market. Here are some tips and insights for Western brands on how they can launch resonant Songkran campaigns.

Dos and Don’ts

When Western brands seek to associate with Songkran, they may face several pitfalls and challenges, primarily related to cultural understanding and sensitivity. Here are some things you should carefully research, study, and plan before starting your PR campaigns.

Cultural Awareness: Brands risk alienating Thai consumers and missing their messaging if they lack cultural understanding.

Stereotypes and Generalizations: Presenting Songkran solely as a party or water fight can be seen as disrespectful to Thai cultural heritage and display a superficial understanding of Thailand.

Localization: Brands must tailor their approaches to suit Thai preferences, rather than utilizing existing campaigns.

By being aware of these pitfalls and challenges, Western brands can take proactive steps to ensure that their Songkran campaigns are respectful, culturally sensitive, and ultimately successful in engaging with Thai consumers.

Crafting an effective Songkran campaign

Once you’ve done your due diligence, these are the three steps for creating successful strategic communications and campaigns during Songkran.

Step 1: Choose the ideal location

You must meticulously assess which atmosphere aligns best with your campaign objectives and target audience.

In Bangkok, Siam Square stands out as the quintessential choice for brands hosting events, pop-ups, or other physical campaigns during Songkran, transforming into a dynamic playground for various groups of people each year, offering a diverse and bustling vibe. Western brands  seeking to connect with party lovers can look to Khao San Road and Silom Road as prime destinations. 

Thailand also boasts several other popular destinations that attract international travelers, including Chiang Mai, Phuket, Pattaya, and Khon Kaen. Each location offers a unique theme and highlight of the year, so brands need to ensure they are aware of these and plan accordingly. 

Step 2: Partner with key stakeholders

This year’s Songkran festival is particularly significant, as the festival has been recognized as an Intangible Cultural Heritage event by UNESCO. The Thai government is promoting nationwide celebrations known as the Maha Songkran World Water Festival 2024, aimed at highlighting and preserving Thai traditions across the nation, especially in Bangkok.

Given the special nature of this year’s Songkran, Western brands have a unique opportunity to collaborate with the Thai government bodies or important public sectors of Thai tourism like Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) to launch impactful PR campaigns during the 21-day celebration period.

Step 3: Focus on experiences, community engagement, and CSR efforts

Building a strong relationship with potential customers is an extremely valuable tool for brands hoping to make a splash in Thailand and differentiate themselves from competitors. Here are some examples of Western brands’ 2023 Songkran campaigns that were effective and delivered in the Thai market. 

Photo credit: Amarin TV

During last year’s Songkran festival, Dyson, a renowned home appliance brand, set up ‘Dyson Supersonic’ hair dryer booths in Siam Square. Positioned as an ‘emergency rescue’ for those wanting to quickly dry and style their hair after enjoying the water fights, this buzzy campaign received a very positive response and praise from not just on-site participants, but across social media platforms and throughout the media.

Photo credit: GoPro

Another great campaign comes from GoPro, who worked with TAT to encourage both local and international influencers to create and share memorable videos from their participation in Chiang Mai’s Songkran festival. Championing the waterproof capabilities of GoPro cameras, the campaign effectively showcased the product’s capacity while highlighting Chiang Mai’s vibrant Songkran festival to an international audience.

The success of these campaigns lies in the way brands adeptly tapped into the true pain points of Thai consumers. While Dyson capitalised on the need for people to dry off quickly after experiencing a Songkran water fight, GoPro embraced the allure of capturing Songkran memories without worrying about water damage. Importantly, these campaigns avoided being overly sales-driven, ensuring participants felt genuinely engaged rather than pressured to make purchases. This went a long way in fostering positive consumer sentiment, local touch points, and brand love.

Western brands can develop impactful Songkran campaigns by ensuring they fully understand the importance and nuances of Songkran and finding ways to engage with consumers in an authentic way. By doing this, Western brands can foster respectful and culturally sensitive engagement, ultimately leading to successful campaigns.

If you’re looking for a PR agency to help design a successful communications plan for your brand during the festive seasons, look no further!

Reach out to us at [email protected].

How To Get Media Relations Right During Ramadan

Ramadan, which began this week, is one of the most significant religious events in Southeast Asia – and is often considered a great time to reach consumers who are on the lookout for great deals during this period. Less tangibly, it is also a great time for businesses to strengthen their media relations by embracing the values and spirit of this sacred time. 

In this piece, we delve into the strategies and approaches that can help businesses effectively build media relations during Ramadan, fostering trust, understanding, and meaningful connections, bringing it to life with actual case studies. 

Curate themes and content

One of the key aspects of building media relations during Ramadan is tailoring content to resonate with the themes and values of this holy month. During this time, brands must consider incorporating themes of compassion, community, and reflection into their media pitches and content. 

Highlight how your organisation’s values align with those of Ramadan, whether it’s through seasonal campaign initiatives, community projects, or promoting unity and togetherness. By weaving these themes into your messaging, you can create content that not only captures the spirit of Ramadan but also resonates deeply with your audience and the media.

Build long-term relationships

Building authentic relationships with journalists and editors is essential for effective engagement all year long, but especially during Ramadan.

To achieve this, brands and businesses must take the opportunity to learn more about our media friends and be more relevant. Rather than having a generic media list, create one that’s targeted and relevant to your business – and then reach out to them with thoughtful Ramadan-related hampers, and meaningful story ideas.

We can learn so much from other markets, which successfully pulled off media gatherings and strengthened friendships in the wake of the fasting month.

For example, in Indonesia, JobStreet seized the opportunity to connect with the media through an intimate media gathering during Ramadan. By having the company’s CEO and top executives share important news updates while breaking their fast with the media, the company was able to greater camaraderie and open new doors. To build on those relationships, JobStreet also curated special PR hampers as a token of the company’s appreciation. 

COO of Jobstreet by SEEK, Indonesia, deep in conversation with Indonesian media friends

In Malaysia, Pavilion Bukit Jalil hosted an experiential event where members of the media were given a food tour through the mall’s delectable dining options, featuring nutritious options for them to break fast with. The mall also took this opportunity to showcase Ramadan promotions, and journalists had a chance to revel in stunning festive décor.

With this media event, Pavilion Bukit Jalil created unique, culturally relevant stories for the journalists to tell. To further enhance their relationship with the media, Pavilion Bukit Jalil prepared special goodie bags as a token of appreciation.

Pavilion Bukit Jalil held a lively launch event to celebrate the month of Ramadan with members of the media

This Ramadan, businesses and organisations have a unique opportunity to build media relations while embracing the values and spirit of this sacred time. By tailoring content to resonate with Ramadan themes and building meaningful relationships, businesses can effectively embrace the spirit of Ramadan and nurture meaningful connections that endure beyond the holy month.

Need a PR agency to help you get media relations right during Ramadan? Hit us up by emailing [email protected]

Public Relations vs Content Marketing: Putting Your Budgets to Work

Most marketers are struggling under pressure to outperform, even as they navigate budget cuts. They’re unable to hire more people but are expected to produce more content and media coverage than ever before. Past conversations with clients show that allocating budgets strategically is crucial and that one wrong move can prove costly. One marketer, for example, was forced to ditch their SEO budget in favour of a splashy, one-off event, which we’re not sure generated the expected results. 

Public relations (PR) and content marketing offer distinct value propositions — but work best when brands take an integrated approach. While PR focuses on earned media and reputation, content marketing involves creating and distributing valuable, relevant content to attract and retain your target audience. However, neither can be done in a silo. But understanding the strengths and limitations of each approach will help you better allocate resources for your specific goals. 

If you’re torn about how to spend your budget, consider doing these four things:

1. Research matters

Before diving headfirst into a full-blown marketing strategy, take the time to conduct thorough research. Many brands skip this crucial step because of historical bias or assumptions they’re making about their target audience. 

By understanding your potential customers’ needs, interests, and preferences, you can tailor your messaging and positioning to resonate more effectively. Research can also uncover data that validates your communication plans and identifies new growth opportunities. Ultimately, investing time in research can lead to more informed decision-making and a stronger, more impactful marketing strategy.

2. Align your objectives to outcomes

Many businesses are tempted to be all things to everyone. Often, this means being everywhere, churning out content that most people aren’t even going to see. While there’s no magical number to content and coverage cadence, the key is to ensure you’re creating high-value content on a regular basis across key distribution channels. 

To get started, identify your primary goal and allocate budgets and efforts accordingly. For example, if your goal is to gain greater visibility and reach a broader audience, consider a well-thought-out public relations campaign and use coverage to create content on your LinkedIn and website. But if you want to focus on lead generation , concentrate your efforts on more blog content, email marketing, case studies, ebooks, etc. Regardless of our efforts, we recommend repurposing content and tailoring it to fit the channels of your choice. 

3. Measuring performance and ROI

It’s crucial to set clear goals and track how your PR and content marketing efforts are doing. This means deciding what success looks like for you, whether it’s getting mentioned in the media, driving more people to your website, or lead generation. By regularly checking your performance data, like how many times your brand is mentioned in articles or how many visitors your website gets, you can see what’s working and what’s not. For instance, if you’re running a content marketing campaign, you might measure success by tracking how many leads it generates through downloads of a gated ebook. This helps you understand where to focus your resources and proves the value of your marketing efforts.

4. Embracing innovation

When used well, generative AI can help businesses preserve budgets. For instance, the right prompts can quickly assist in pulling together the first draft for a press release or a blog’s structure. Marketers, however, still need to do the heavy lifting when it comes to campaign ideation and original storytelling. 

The arrival of transformative technology can be challenging and confusing. Overall, human connection remains important for communications professionals as no AI solution can conceive stories, liaise, pitch, and land coverage with the media in quite the same way. 

Let Mutant amplify your marketing success

Understanding where to allocate your budget is key to maximising your marketing efforts. Whether you’re aiming to enhance your brand’s visibility, engage your target audience with valuable content, or generate leads, finding the right mix of PR and content marketing efforts can significantly elevate your strategy.

At Mutant, we specialise in crafting integrated marketing strategies that align with your business goals, ensuring your budgets work harder and smarter. With expertise in PR and content marketing in Singapore, our team can help you make informed decisions, measure ROI effectively, and innovate with the latest technologies while keeping the human touch in storytelling and media relations.

Ready to optimise your marketing budgets and drive results? Let’s talk about how we can bring your marketing strategy to greater heights. Reach out to our communications and PR agency at [email protected] to unlock your company’s full potential.

The Enduring Relatability of Taylor Swift: What Brands Can Learn From The Superstar

No matter where you look, it’s hard to avoid Taylor Swift. Whether it’s a new album announcement, her romance with a professional athlete, or the economic impact of The Eras Tour, there’s no denying that the singer-songwriter dominated headlines in 2023 – and it doesn’t seem like that’s going to change anytime soon.

But what is perhaps most impressive about this is the fact that Swift is doing it nearly two decades into her career. Her first album was released in 2006, and since then she’s put out 13 more albums, won 14 Grammys, and successfully changed genres, going from a country chanteuse to an international pop star. This continuing success is in large part due to Swift’s talent and hard work. But crucially, she has remained relatable to people the world over, even as her fame has risen to incredible heights.

Swift’s boundless appeal

Despite the fact that she’s a superstar with wealth, accolades, and access to a lifestyle that most of us can barely fathom, Swift doesn’t often feel untouchable. She is endearing, but not cool; she’s sharp, but not intimidating; she’s witty, but not uproarious; she’s poised, but not graceful. And that means she’s someone many people can relate to – the kind-of awkward friend who sometimes tries a little too hard and is more than a little self-deprecating.

And on top of all that, there’s her songwriting. Album after album, her work captures the minutiae and nuances of life and love in a way that makes listeners feel as if she perhaps looked into their brains and watched memories about a first kiss or a toxic friendship or a slow heartbreak or a particularly wonderful weekend play out.

But beyond penning songs that successfully communicate nostalgia and angst and rage and joy in ways that are universally understood, Swift and her team have pinpointed ways to keep her fans engaged and not just hungry, but ravenous for more.

In examining her career, there are several lessons brands can learn from the enduringly relatable Swift.

Don’t be afraid to evolve

It’s called The Eras Tour for a reason: Swift has very effectively changed genres, styles, sounds, and attitudes from album to album, creating different “eras” throughout her career that reflect how she – and her audience – have grown and changed over the years.

Take the temperature of your vertical and audience regularly and consider whether you are still relevant. If the answer is no, then identify what you need to change, be it a complete rebrand, new messaging pillars, a shift in strategy, or tweaking your brand voice – because it’s time to enter a new era.

Allow your failures to make you stronger

Several of Swift’s public embarrassments loom large in pop culture. “I’mma let you finish” became a catchphrase after Kanye West interrupted Swift’s acceptance speech during a live awards show; her unrestrained reactions when winning awards turned her into a punchline (and a lot of gifs); photos of a boyfriend wearing an “I ♥ TS” shirt at her Fourth of July party made both of them internet punching bags; and her statement about the rights to her masters being sold (which was the catalyst for the “Taylor’s Version” re-recordings of her first six albums) led many people to question the veracity of her claims.

Rather than pretending these moments never happened, Swift usually confronts them head-on after a period of reflection. Whether it be through songwriting or even merch, she often works these moments into her narrative, owning them, and making them part of her brand.

It’s an interesting consideration for brands. Though not every crisis scenario or company failure is something that businesses will want to shine a light on or remind people of, addressing public missteps can be beneficial. It could bring a sense of humility, humour, or levity if done correctly, and even go to show how much a company has reflected and grown.

Inject fun into your strategy

Something that Swift has become synonymous with is her use of clever hints and Easter eggs, which keep her fanbase puzzling over what might be coming next. Most recently, Swift performed a mash-up of three songs during one of her Eras Tour concerts in Melbourne that has many fans speculating on social media that she was hinting “reputation (Taylor’s Version)” will be released in August.

Incorporating playful ideas that tease new products, services, or offers, or that simply engage customers between campaigns, is a great way to strengthen your marketing strategy, and keep you top of mind.

Proclaim your values

For years, Swift stayed out of politics. But in 2018, she publicly endorsed a Democratic politician in her home state. Since then, she has continued to be vocal about her political opinions, beliefs, and values, supporting the LGBTQ+ communitydefining her stance on abortionreleasing a political anthem, and encouraging voter registration.

As value-based marketing becomes more crucial for businesses, it’s important for brands to define their values, and incorporate them into their key messages and mission statement. From there, brands can then determine how to create marketing campaigns, communications strategies, and crisis plans that consistently and seamlessly reinforce their values.

Surprise your audience from time to time

Despite Swift’s penchant for hints, she often still manages to surprise fans. During her Eras Tour shows, she reserves time to play two “surprise songs” that change from show to show, and in years past, she’s referenced memes of herself, hosted intimate, in-home listening parties for fans, and sent fans gifts during Christmas, which was quickly dubbed “Swiftmas.”

By finding ways to delight fans – either as a collective or individually – Swift forges a deeper bond with them. Brands, too, can do this, creating opportunities to foster a sense of community and genuinely bring joy to their audiences, while also boosting engagement and brand loyalty.

Taking a page out of Swift’s playbook can help your brand find ways to remain self-aware, connect with your audience, create community, and grow, when needed. And if it doesn’t go exactly as planned? Then just shake it off and move on to the next era.

This article first appeared in Marketing Interactive.

Whether you want to deep-dive into important conversations about global pop stars or need help with a solid content strategy, we’ve got you covered — [email protected]

Show, Don’t Tell: How to Write Compelling B2B Brand Narratives

Brand stories are everywhere. Whether you’re on social media or a company website, watching a makeup tutorial or inquiring about landscaping services, you’ll encounter businesses telling you their story.

But when it comes to B2B efforts, many brands suddenly stop telling their story. Instead, they dig deep into technicalities, numbers, and the nitty-gritty, producing reports, whitepapers, and case studies that make you feel like you’d rather watch paint dry than read another word.

While demonstrating expertise and the ability to drive results are critical components of B2B strategies, that doesn’t mean that the way expertise is demonstrated and results are qualified should be so dull. People want to work with people they know, trust, and like — and they can’t truly get to know you or your business if you give them jargon and numbers. When it comes to B2B marketing, compelling storytelling is vital — but often, it’s the piece that’s missing. Here’s how to ensure your brand narrative shines, even when (especially when) talking to other businesses.

Align client journeys with brand messages

If you’re new to B2B storytelling, an excellent exercise is to map out the typical journey of your clients. Identify the types of clients you already work with, as well as those you aspire to work with, and then pinpoint the challenges they usually face when looking to achieve business goals.

You can hone your understanding of these issues, integrating them into your marketing strategy by determining how to use brand storytelling to address client challenges and offer key solutions.

Demonstrate expertise by taking the reader on an adventure

“Show, don’t tell” is an enduring piece of writing advice for very good reason. Rather than insisting that you know what you’re doing, it’s more effective to prove your knowledge and capabilities by demonstrating them.

When creating case studies, reflect on how you helped your clients achieve their goals, and use that information to build your brand narrative. Follow classic story structure to ensure the reader understands the client, their challenges, how you helped solve them, and the results they achieved with your assistance.


By showing how you solved a problem and always including a strong call to action, potential clients will have a better understanding of how your team approaches challenges and will be able to envision how the two of you can work together. No bold claims or heavy selling needed!

Weave in brand values and key messages

No matter the format of the content you create, ensure that your company’s values and key messages are always included. These principles should guide every piece of content you create, creating a seamless, consistent, and effective brand narrative.

Lean into authenticity

People today are incredibly savvy — they can sniff out an imposter very easily. Because of this, it’s better to develop a brand narrative that is authentic to your company, reflecting the values, mission, and culture, rather than try to be more corporate or more casual than you truly are. In both traditional and digital methods of B2B marketing setting the tone is extremely important, and if it’s clear you’re trying to be something you’re not, it’ll likely be hard to retain clients.

Ensure your brand voice is consistent across all touchpoints

Be it an annual report, social media video, sales deck, or LinkedIn article, every piece of content your company pushes should use the same brand voice. Though you can — and should — tailor content to different channels and the audiences they attract, that doesn’t mean that your brand voice or story changes.

Rather, let your brand voice guide the way you tell stories. In doing so, you can ensure that your narrative and identity are consistent. This will help set you apart from the competition and give potential clients a great idea of who you are, what you’re about, and what they can expect from you.

Unlock your potential in B2B marketing with Mutant 

Ultimately, your B2B marketing strategy should reflect who you are as a business — and the stories you tell should, too. By injecting compelling brand narratives, consistent messaging, and genuine personality into your content, you may learn that you’re not for everyone, but you’ll also find exactly the people you are for. They’ll like what they see, know what they’re in for, and trust that you’re the best possible partner. All you have to do is tell them your story.

Looking to sharpen your key messages or elevate consistency for your content marketing audience in Singapore? Reach out to our communications agency in Singapore at [email protected]. Our team of expert storytellers is ready to assist you.

PR 101: How To Build and Foster Better Relationships With Your Media Pals

When we were young, making friends was as easy as ABC. You walk up to someone at the playground and next thing you know, he or she is your new best friend. As we grow older, building relationships can be a challenge, especially when it’s part of your job. Building strong professional relationships with journalists is a crucial part of public relations and reputation building.  

 Here’s how you can build a strong relationship with your media pals:

Do your homework

Before reaching out to any journalists, PR professionals must  do their homework and understand who covers what beat for specific publications. While this may seem simple, many often neglect this important step. By understanding the type of news story that a specific journalist covers, we can avoid an awkward situation of having to explain why we are pitching a lifestyle consumer story to a business journalist. If you are able to bring a story that is relevant to a specific journalist’s beat, you are one step closer to making a new friend. 

Identify relevant angles

We must remember that all journalists have the responsibility to write about things that impact their readers. As a PR consultant, while it is important to help your clients hit their key messages, we must make sure it’s a story worth the journalist’s time. 

Instead of pitching everything under the sun, try asking the journalist what stories he or she is planning to write and discuss how your clients can fit in with relevant insights. 

This changes the dynamic of the relationship from merely providing an angle and hoping the journalist might be interested in, to a relationship that encourages two-way communication. This way, you can add value by helping the journalist  develop a strong story that truly impacts their target audience while positioning your clients as thought leaders. 

Mind your manners

It’s true that manners maketh man. Always remember to be courteous no matter who you speak to or via any communication channels – face to face, phone, email or even a WhatsApp message. When we are courteous in our interactions, we leave behind a good impression. Also, don’t underestimate simple gestures such as dropping an appreciation note after interviews or any PR engagements. Genuine appreciation goes a long way in fostering better relationships with anyone. 

While the tips mentioned above may seem simple, PR professionals today don’t practise them enough. Journalists are juggling multiple stories and sources every day – so the least we can do is anticipate their needs versus overwhelming them. Once you have established a strong connection, it’ll be easier to  cut through the noise and  deliver real results for your clients. 

We’re all for making new friends: chat with us at [email protected]

How Brands Can Virtually Engage With Customers

Even before the pandemic, PwC research showed that 59% of global consumers surveyed felt companies had lost touch with the human element of customer experience. In fact, 75% of customers surveyed preferred to interact with a human versus an automated machine. 

If you are a B2C company, your most important stakeholder is a human being who is craving comfort, connection and a memorable customer experience. The question brands should be asking themselves isn’t is “how do I gain more market share”, but “how can I connect with my customers in a meaningful and relevant way.

In this uncertain era of the pandemic, people are craving that human touch and personal experience even more! Check out our tips on how to engage customers below:

Using social media to connect with customers

Social media platforms, once cluttered with advertisements for products, are now a space for brands to start online conversations, play games, set challenges and host workshops to engage with customers to make followers feel like they’re part of an online community. 

Social media gives brands an opportunity to connect with customers virtually and create a memorable experience. Disney, for example, wanted to engage and reward their most loyal Club Mickey Mouse fans during the launch of the fourth season of the popular variety series by having a Club Mickey Mouse Virtual F4NFEST.

The F4NFEST had the Club Mickey Mouse Mouseketeers directly interact with their fans by playing games, taking questions from fans, giving fans a platform to share their fan art and messages to the cast, as well as treating fans to a special preview of what Season 4 has in store. 

Get customers voting

The growth of the consumer voting phenomenon can be attributed to the success of many reality shows that get viewers involved by casting their vote for their favourite contestant. Even popular news websites such as BuzzFeed are populated with reader polls covering a variety of topics from the best pizza toppings, to people’s favourite superhero. 

Similarly, brands can engage their customers by giving them the power to decide something for your brand. For instance, Singapore Sports Hub got the public to decide how the National Stadium will be lit up on National Day. They invited the public to vote for their favourite light design out of three choices available, and spurred them to answer ‘What makes you proud to be Singaporean’ for a chance to win $560 worth of Kallang Wave Mall vouchers. 

Engage followers with fun challenges

From the Dalgona coffee trend, 30-day workout challenges, TikTok dance challenges, the pandemic has given rise to several social media challenges to keep netizens busy during lockdown.  

People are always keen to take part in fun social media challenges – especially when a prize is up for grabs! To promote the return of the Spicy Buffalo Chicken Sub, Subway Malaysia wanted followers to feel the heat by joining the #FeelTheHIIT Dance Challenge on TikTok that saw several challenge submissions with a total of 633 million views on the social platform. 

Give customers an escape

With more than a year of lockdowns and travel restrictions, Malaysian Airlines seized the opportunity to invoke a sense of nostalgia with an ASMR experience on social media. The Malaysian national carrier released a compilation of sounds that one would normally hear throughout their flight experience, including safety announcements, the hum of the plane engines in the air, the captain’s announcements, and so on. 

Small efforts such as these go a long way because customers are seeking more creative, entertaining and immersive experiences. According to Forrester, extended reality – which includes augmented, mixed and virtual reality technologies – is  set to increase this year.

Reward loyal customers

Loyalty programs have been around for centuries (since the 1700s in fact!), it’s hard to imagine life without them. 

During the lockdown, Pavilion Kuala Lumpur introduced their new loyalty program via their Pavilion Privileges membership where members could receive exclusive rewards and discounts at the shopping mall. On top of that, they also launched a new multi-feature mobile app for members to manage their Pavilion Privileges account and have access to interactive mall navigation, on-the-go mall updates and mobile-exclusive rewards to elevate their overall shopping experience. 

Customer engagement is the emotional connection between a brand and their customer. By creating more personal and engaging customer experiences, the hope is that not only your customers will buy more, but they will also help promote your brand and demonstrate more loyalty.

Need help engaging with your customers? Reach out to Mutant’s content and PR specialists at [email protected]

How To Keep Content Available During COVID-19

It’s 2020 and the rules have changed. Due to the global pandemic, content that may have worked for businesses last year may no longer work this year. Events are now highly restricted or banned, business travel is curtailed, and face-to-face meetings are discouraged, pushing many businesses into unusual circumstances. 

The economic disruption may also tempt some companies to suspend all marketing activities and “go dark” but this would be is a mistake. According to a survey of 25,000 consumers globally by Kantar, only around 1 in 10 consumers think brands should “go dark” during this time. And brands that do disappear from view saw a decline in awareness, posing an additional challenge of regaining lost ground.

With that in mind, here are a few ways your business can keep a stable content pipeline as we grapple with the new normal. 

Prioritise health and safety

People who engage your brand want to know what’s being done to keep them safe and healthy. 

Prepare a list of concerns people are likely to raise and address them right away. For example, you can share about additional steps your employees are taking to ensure customers’ safety, changes to your operating hours or processes, or actions you will take in case of an outbreak linked to your business. 

Include this in your social media posts. Place it on your website’s landing page as an FAQ section. Mention these health and safety guidelines in your brochures, videos, and other marketing and communications collateral. Assure people they have nothing to worry about. 

Update stakeholders on how you’re helping and adapting

Inform people how your business is making a meaningful difference in the community during this difficult time. It can be about how you’re sharing company resources for free, discounts and concessions offered to customers, or how you’re providing support to your own employees. 

Alternatively, you may also have products and services that can help make people’s lives easier during the new normal. If so, share how your products and services are making a meaningful difference and being a solution. 

Regardless of the format it takes, remember to show empathy and compassion. It’s a sensitive time for many people, so avoid any action or content that can be seen as trying to take advantage of a difficult situation.

Share insights about the new normal

Amid all the changes this year, you or your business may have gained new insights. Why not share it with your stakeholders? Businesses and consumers constantly want to know how the landscape has changed from last year. You might have discovered a radical approach to a unique challenge, statistics about new customer behaviour, or an observation about a specific industry. 

Raise awareness about your business by collecting and analysing these insights and sharing them with your stakeholders. Use what you’ve learnt to tell a story, be it through case studies, narratives, or facts and figures. 

Realise that 2020 is not just about COVID

While the pandemic has been a constant background presence this year, an overemphasis on this issue may result in COVID fatigue. Help people take their mind off the pandemic by focusing on non-COVID current issues or life after recovery. 

For example, as a result of the Black Lives Matter movement in the US, many companies have begun to lead conversations about promoting workplace diversity and inclusion. You can also inspire your stakeholders to think about and start preparing for life after the recovery phase. 

Collaborate with others

Consider finding a trusted partner to help extend your reach, complement your weaknesses, or develop synergies. For example, you can partner with firms that can help you establish an online presence and build up your digital capabilities. It doesn’t have to be limited to just companies: Partnerships can happen with known personalities, non-profits, and government agencies.

Want to build a steady content pipeline of content and do not know how to go about it? We can help — write to us at [email protected].


A Dummy’s Guide To Working With An Agency

When it comes to agencies, you don’t really associate them with Greek philosophers.

But if we’re going to ask the question that you came here for, then we’re going to go back a couple of millennia. To Plato’s Republic to be specific. He said:

“Well then, how will our state supply these needs? It will need a farmer, a builder, and a weaver, and also, I think, a shoemaker and one or two others to provide for our bodily needs. So that the minimum state would consist of four or five men….”

It’s a bit of a weird way of saying it, but what our mate Plato states here is the basic idea of division of labour. That economies work best when people do what they are good at, rather than trying to do everything. 

So, when do you need an agency? 

Well, as the farmer or weaver specialise in farming or weaving, the modern-day agency is a specialist in communications – whether it’s PR, creative, design, social, or whatever. If you can’t feasibly do something internally, for whatever reason, then it’s time to look at hiring an agency. 

We know that this decision can be down to a few factors, so to make it easy, think about the SCOPE of what you’re wanting to do.

STANDARD: Could I do this job internally, and ensure it is of high quality?

The first and easiest question to ask yourself is whether you can actually do this job to the standard you need. Anyone can paint a picture, but to create a work of art you need a capable artist. 

COST: If I could do this in-house, will it actually save me money?

This is biggest hurdle to hiring an agency. Fun fact: every employee costs money to a business (including you) so when it comes to doing a project or ongoing work, whether it’s an external agency bill, or an internal salary bill, your company will be paying for the work.

Assuming that you have the same capability internally as the agency, and you’re weighing it up just on cost, there’s a simple test you can do. Quantify your hours, figure out the real cost of your salary (and the opportunity cost of you not working on other things), and compare that to what the agency has quoted you. 


Everyone thinks their baby is the cutest, but as we know, it’s not always the case. Unlike a biased mother, when it comes to brand communications, you don’t want someone from inside the business to be the judge of how the brand is perceived externally. Having someone external work on your business is a great reality check and a good agency will be a great bullsh*t detector, taking the position of your audience when it comes to ideas and communication. 


This one is easy. Agencies are employed to not only come up with concepts, but actually execute them. Sometimes they can do this internally ( stuff like design, writing, etc), and sometimes (like in TV, photography, experiential) they employ production partners to do the job. This is a key element of an agency’s value. 

They do all the sourcing, vetting, quality control, third party payments, and negotiations – an enormous, time-consuming task. As the client, all you have to do is agree to the overall timeline and the cost, and the agency should take care of the everyday minutia. 


One of the great advantages of employing an agency to do the job is that they are accountable. Because you’ve paid for the work and agreed to a scope, you should expect results. Being super clear on what you expect before the work starts is imperative, and will ensure you can see the real value of the agency and decide whether you want to use them again.

If after this process you’ve come to the decision that you need an agency, well, then you need to find a good one. Easier said than done, but lucky for you, we know a good one you might want to try. Talk to us at [email protected]