June 24, 2020 Wasif Khan

COVID-19 Disruption – Bringing Out the Best in Us as Marketers and Beyond

Mankind’s one true nature is to survive and evolve.  Throughout its existence, mankind has experienced large and small natural and self-inflicted disasters.  Each incident, however much more disastrous than its predecessor, has enabled our species to rise up, come together, and come out stronger not only as people but as a species.

The COVID-19 virus is an example of the human species at its finest. 

This virus has brought all aspects of the global economy and human life to a screeching halt. Right now, the World Health Organization is reporting that 8.7 million people are infected, and nearly 500,000 people around the world have died. As governments, scientists, and medical professionals work diligently in mitigating the risks and finding a cure, the ripple effect has shaken the  global economies.  According to Statista, the average global economy will lose a minimum of 2.4% of their GDP value due to the COVID-19 pandemic. That is an estimated loss of $3.4 trillion dollars, and these numbers are rising far beyond the initial estimates.

So how is  the world responding?  

Once again as a species, we have come together to fight the good fight because that’s who we are. If it breaks, we find a way to fix it and move forward. There is no doubt in my mind, and there shouldn’t be any in yours, we will find a cure and we will move forward. In the end, all that we strive for is to fight the good fight that will lead us towards  the new tomorrow.  Our family, friends, co-workers and communities will all move forward because that is how our minds work to always survive and live for a new beginning,  

In the midst of uncertainty and a deluge of lives, jobs, and sometimes hope lost, we have experienced the best of mankind—ordinary people doing extraordinary things with simple acts of kindness. From selfless and tireless efforts of medical professionals, scientists, governments, to business leaders and professionals offering help within their capabilities and capacity.  

I have seen and experienced firsthand the best of humanity.  

Within my very own marketing industry, my company and its peers have lent a helping hand to those affected. Social media is filled with examples of people and companies offering help and standing in solidarity with those who really need it. I’ve seen offers to help write resumes, find jobs, provide free training to acquire skills that are in demand, raise money to save local small businesses, and simply being there to console, listen and advise.  As much of the suffering this pandemic brought, it also brought out the best in people and brought them together.

Every industry, sector, business, and person is affected by this pandemic.  

Global tourism has lost $810 billion, the airline flight frequency was down 62% in June, and 59% of Americans think that the economy is getting worse. The marketing industry has also taken a hit.  Organizations across the globe froze new initiatives and drastically reduced their marketing budgets. Events, industry, and trade shows got cancelled, professionals lost their jobs, furloughed, or experienced a reduction in compensation while stepping in to cover the workload.

However, in the midst of it all, the industry stepped up, innovated and course-corrected. Marketers quickly converted events and tradeshows to digital, leaders built innovative remote workforce models, and adjusted products and services to align with the new reality.  Financial leaders proactively built models that will address short-term needs while ensuring long-term investment in people. In the end, the industry—just like people—came together for the greater good.

I look forward to the new tomorrow that is right around the corner. 

In the meantime, hang on for this wild ride, do your best, be resilient, and wait for it to end. Then we can all get off, because once again humanity survived and we managed to go forward.


Wasif Khan

As Marvel Marketers' Chief Operating Officer, Wasif has a long history of building and scaling businesses, from startups to giant enterprises. He has a deep understanding of what it takes to build successful companies and has developed powerful sales and marketing strategies for companies all over the world.