Head of Leasing for one of the biggest shopping mall chains in the Philippines, with more that 40 existing properties all over the country
All of their malls are currently closed, except for the essential retail stores like supermarkets, pharmacies and banks. Right now, the company has a 5-point action plan to combat the crisis, as follows:
Walking the talk. It’s these times of crisis that serve as a litmus test for the values that the company upholds. For this particular company, it is the value of malasakit. As seen above, caring for people is second in their action plan, which speaks volumes about how they walk the talk in terms of the value of compassion. They have a 24/7 hotline for employees who experience symptoms of Covid so they will be properly guided, and their partner clinic is ready to accept PUI employees. They also value mental health, sending out regular emails to help people cope with stress and panic. And payments for the cooperative program are also postponed. One of their motivations for remaining liquid is so that they won’t have to lay off people, going as far as reducing the pay of the higher ups.
Synergy. This mall company is just part of a bigger conglomerate that holds a portfolio of diverse business interests. To prepare for the market reopening, they are tapping into their partner companies and enabling synergies in order to help their retail partners survive the new normal. For example, for their restaurant partners, they project that business will involve more take-out and delivery service, so not only are they sharing knowledge and best practices to restaurant owners to bridge required skills sets required by the new normal, they are also tapping into their partner logistics company to help these restaurants in the future. For clothing retailers, they see synergies with their partner e-commerce shopping site. These are just some examples of how they see collaborations will manifest in order for companies to help each other survive the new normal.
A marketing and events executive who is in charge of events and live activations in a major mall chain
Due to the lockdown and social distancing efforts of the government to fight the spread of COVID and to flatten the curve, all their activities lined up for the rest of the year were scrapped. This includes mall-wide sales, women’s month celebration, earth hour, etc. They had to assess everything and adjust their plans right away.
Currently, what they’ve done is to recreate their marketing plans for the entire year. If before, they just follow the usual calendar of events, now, they have to recreate it from scratch in such a way that it will not be tone deaf to what is happening on the ground. They come up with a three point plan:
Provide value unusual. Because people are stuck at home, everyone is now online and they see this period as their chance to grow their online community by rethinking the way they do events. If they can't bring the people to the mall events, they're bringing the mall events to their homes. They are planning lining up online series that will appeal to their audience (mostly moms) like advice shows and virtual gigs for a cause. They also plan to do things like highlighting frontliners by making stories about them, and customer engagement features, etc. For their tenants, they continue to support them by giving them exposure to their Facebook group because they believe that promoting their partners will be a win-win situation for both parties. Since they can no longer promote them through events and their usual marketing efforts, they do promotions of their services which include surveys for their audience for the restart, restaurants that allow takeouts and food delivery service, available bank services, and share tenants’ COVID-related news.