Editor’s note: Roben Allong is CEO of Lightbeam Communications, New York. Allong can be reached at robena@lightbeamnyc.com. Jay Zaltzman is the president of Bureau West Market Research and Marketing Strategy, Los Angeles. Zaltzman can be reached at jay@bureauwest.com. 

The authors would like to thank the following ThinkGlobal Qualitative team members for their contributions: Susan Abbott, Rebecca Bryant, Sofia Costa Alves, Véronique Gaboriau, Corette Haf, Darren Harvey, Jeff Hecker, Hana Klouckova, Ilka Kuhagen, Piyul Mukherjee, Astrid Velasquez and Rob Volpe

Marketers around the world have been challenged to respond to two rapidly evolving crises at once: a pandemic affecting consumers, customers and clients, combined with a major economic slowdown caused by the pandemic response.

ThinkGlobal Qualitative researchers conducted an extended online discussion with 35 marketing professionals in brand leadership and insights roles in large and medium-sized companies around the world over the course of 30 days in the first quarter of 2020 as the COVID-19 pandemic took hold. The goal of the research was to understand how marketers are handling the current crisis, what they consider best practices and their thoughts about how to move forward most effectively.

We were struck by how marketers around the world were facing similar challenges and generally agreed on the best approaches to address those challenges. 

Our ThinkGlobal Qualitative members put their heads together with the marketers and developed potential solutions to address those challenges.

The COVID pandemic caused profound disruption across the globe – and in the business world, for most marketers. 

They are feeling:

“Management want desperately to have a firm POV, and to make decisions now based on today's consumer behaviors. However, only some of the changed behaviors will be lasting. Not everything will st...