As COVID-19 began to emerge across the United States, marketers were quick to jump into action to share how their organizations are responding to the situation. It was similar to those stories of when people win big in the lottery, and all types of ‘long lost relatives’ and ‘old friends’ start showing up out of nowhere. Brands I hadn’t interacted with or even thought about in years sent me emails about how they were responding: precautions being taken, philanthropic endeavors and, more often than not, urgent and time-sensitive offers to act on immediately – or miss out entirely. There were a lot of emails. We all got them.

The problem was that most people didn’t need or even want those emails. We weren’t shopping, we weren’t going anywhere. Stores and restaurants were closing, people were being furloughed and losing their jobs, and those that weren’t…

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