Covid-19 Food Advertisements

Covid-19 Food Advertisements

How many Covid-19 food advertisements have you heard that say “we are here for you” or “you can count on (insert brand name) during these difficult times”?

After 2020, the vast majority of the world was ready for a new year, including (hopefully) marketers. And more specifically, food marketers. It seemed as if every food company was trying to compete for the top spot of who showed the most empathy and support for front-line workers as well as Americans in general as we all felt the effects of the pandemic.

Don’t get me wrong. It’s so important to recognize the front-line workers and acknowledge that this is, indeed, a very difficult time for many. The question is, is this effective marketing?

Are these Covid-19 food advertisements inspiring purchases for your food brand?

According to an article by Harvard Business Review, brands are afraid to say anything controversial, so they end up repeating the same messaging over and over. The article goes on to say that every Covid-19 advertisement is the same. And for a while there, I have to agree. Somber music, talk of uncertain times, and messages of assurance that (insert brand name) will be here for you.

Are there any good Covid-19 food advertisements?

I thought two food brands that did a great job of recognizing the pandemic but still managing to inspire purchases and are Coca-Cola and Oreo.


Copyright Coca-Cola Company

First, Coca-Cola’s commercial, “The Great Meal,“ definitely acknowledged the pandemic’s hardships but was still able to focus on the positives that have come from a challenging time. The commercial features families at home cooking and sharing meals together. And, of course, enjoying a classic Coca-Cola. Ending with “together tastes better,” the advertisement evoked emotions of nostalgia and sentimentality, on-brand for Classic Coca-Cola.


Second is America’s favorite sandwich cookie, Oreo. Oreo took to highlight the playfulness of the product. The campaign, “Stay Home, Stay Playful,” included a commercial featuring families in quarantine during the pandemic. The campaign was a spin-off of the original “Stay Playful.”

Again, Oreo took to highlighting the good that has come from quarantining, more togetherness as a family, and people getting creative on how to have fun. The lighthearted and pretty catchy soundtrack is a testament to that. I even saw some people commenting on YouTube that they would download the track.

Let’s face it. None of us need a reminder of 2020. We are all ready to start looking forward to better times ahead. If my opinion means anything, I say stick to the lighthearted messaging at this point and get back to regularly scheduled advertising.

Want to learn more about food advertising? Please reach out to the NewPoint team. If you are interested in more food brand marketing topics, please visit our Food for Thought page or check out NewPoint’s Patrick Nycz’s book: Moving Your Brand Up the Food Chain.