Community life is practically on pause through the pandemic. And yet, there is a feeling of a stronger sense of community being engendered.
People are finding new and creative ways to connect with friends and family using video calls with online quizzes and zoom nights in. And the public displays of solidarity from children’s rainbows adorning the nation’s windows to the now-weekly ritual of clapping for carers bring a strong sense of societal fabric.
The situation the masses now find themselves is identical to that of minorities did before the growth of the internet, reaching out to find connections with people with a common purpose, interest or need.
The internet enabled minorities, based on sexuality, race, religion, medical conditions or niche hobbies, to better connect with those with a common interest or the like-minded.
At the advent of the internet, there was an explosion of online communities to overcome the barriers of geography, isolation, and a need for anonymity in a less tolerant time – in some cases.
With no sign of social distancing being brought to a conclusion, we now all find ourselves in this situation. We are social creatures and have had our social lives severely curtailed. And so, online communities are where many of us are turning.
There are several brands, who either organically or even strategically have established online communities. Lego, Apple and Starbucks quickly come to mind. There are others whose product is the community itself, such as Mumsnet.
Those brands who effectively enable consumers to connect are making themselves an indispensable service to a public who are craving a sense of community during the coronavirus crisis.
As ever, Fruit Marketing are available to talk with brands interested in developing an online community.