Not all heroes wear capes; some create awareness!

I have been in advertising for the last 20 years, and I always thought my peers and I would be the most useless part of the community during a global crisis. The doctors and nurses would save lives, IT guys would restore technology, electricians and plumbers would fix homes—while we'd sit there and wait for help. But this crisis has alleviated that inferiority complex. The most important strategy right now to fight coronavirus is to build awareness, especially around social distancing and staying at home. This is where marketers and advertisers have been coming in and upping the ante.

Of course, thousands of brands are doing much more than brand awareness and playing their part to show they are an integral part of the community. Being a representative of a publication that reaches hundreds of communities across America, I want to thank them, recognize them, and let them know their contribution is not going unnoticed. We want to give a shoutout to every brand helping out in these tough times. 

It was difficult to choose from thousands of brands contributing in different ways, so since we can’t mention all, I picked a few brands that I love and like what they are doing for the communities in America and around the world.

Microsoft will keep paying the hourly workers at their campus. 

Portland’s Shine Distillery started producing and is giving away hand sanitizer.

LinkedIn made 16 learning courses for free that provide tips on how to stay productive, build relationships when you’re not face-to-face, use virtual meeting tools, and balance family and work dynamics. 

Coke Corona Ad

Image Courtesy of Coke

Adobe announced giving higher education and K-12 institutional customers of their Creative Cloud apps the ability to request temporary “at-home” access for their students and educators.

Amazon announced hiring 100,000 more workers and giving raises to staff to deal with coronavirus demands. Amazon has also created a $25M fund to help its delivery drivers and seasonal workers cope with coronavirus, and a $5M fund to help affected small businesses in Seattle.

&Pizza is offering free, unlimited pizzas to hospital workers, their employees, and their immediate families. The company is also raising hourly pay by $1. 

UberEats and DoorDash waived commission fees for small restaurant partners, and Postmates has launched a program for small businesses that temporarily waives commission fees for businesses in the SF Bay Area. 

Image Courtesy Anheuser-Busch

Image Courtesy Anheuser-Busch

Comcast, Charter, Verizon, Google, T-Mobile, and Sprint have signed a pledge to keep Americans internet-connected for the next 60 days, even if people cannot afford to pay. 

Disney has promised to continue paying their employees during the closure and will give refunds to all those who had planned on visiting.

U-Haul will give 30 days of free self-storage to all college students who have been impacted by schedule changes at their universities. 

United’s CEO and President would forego their base salaries until at least June 30. 

Nike World

Image Courtesy Nike

Apple has closed all of its stores outside of Greater China and will re-open in several weeks after extensive deep cleaning. All employees will be paid for the duration of the closure.

Delta’s CEO is giving up his salary for the year.

Comcast, Charter, Verizon, Google, T-Mobile, and Sprint join hands to keep Americans internet-connected for the next 60 days, even if people cannot afford to pay.

Walmart, the world's largest retailer, said it would hire 150,000 workers, and for those taking positions in its fulfillment centers will earn $2 more an hour through Memorial Day. That means minimum pay will increase to between $15 and $19 an hour. 

Most of these brands have also announced they will give paid sick leave to the staff who have coronavirus or show symptoms of it.

For the last few years, we have seen so much negativity on social media, and many were losing their faith in mankind. Ironically, it took a disaster for us to see that there is more good than bad as people from all over the world come together and fight this battle. Brands, celebrities, politicians, rich, poor, everyone is uniting for a big cause and making us realize that at the end of the day, the world is one giant community.

If you have a story of a brand supporting communities tell us in the comment section.