How to communicate positive, optimistic messages, even in the midst of a pandemic, is the topic of the latest “PRs Top Pros Talk” interview with Agean Public Relations founder Alyssa Garnick.

Garnick talks with Doug Simon about the “push for optimism” that she says a lot of consumer brands are tapping into these days and lays out some guidelines that brands should follow to make the most of that push.

While she makes a distinction between “passion brands” (those with a very strong, active base of followers) and “commodity brands” (those that provide practical, essential services), Garnick says that, even now, creating a sense of fun can reap benefits for brands in both categories.

Krispy Kreme is a “passion brand” that Garnick says has “done an amazing job capitalizing on and propelling positivity in the marketplace” through such promotions as “medical worker Mondays” or “sweet Saturdays,” which gave consumers free doughnuts to give to a quarantined neighbor.

A key to successfully carrying out such initiatives, she tells Simon, in knowing when a brand has built the kind of consumer trust that gives it “permission to play.”

That’s especially important for brands that want to work stunts into a promotional drive. “Stunts can work,” she says, but “buyer beware, you need to be very careful.”

As someone who has recently started up her own firm, Garnick discusses the unique opportunities the current environment provides. “It’s a great time to launch an offering if you can,” she says. “Companies need options. They need different options right now, and they’re open to different options right now.”

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Interested in taking part? Contact Doug Simon at [email protected]

D S Simon Media helps clients get their stories on television through satellite media tours and by producing and distributing content to the media. The company also produces live social media events.