The COVID-19 pandemic has changed the way we live, but perhaps more profoundly, how we do business. Stores have closed, and kids have been sent home. The world feels like something that would happen in a scifi disaster movie. No part of our lives personal or professional has stayed the same. The licensing industry has been no different the challenges have been equally real. And this hasn’t just meant learning to work from home.
At this year’s fully digital Licensing Week Virtual event, licensors have shared how they’re innovating to beat the problems that 2020 offers and taking on the new reality that we see evolving around us. So here is the advice that people were talking about on the trading floor and breakout rooms.
Coming Together but far apart
You can work from home, but can you build a community from home? The answer is yes. We have to get used to people coming into our homes and ours theirs, albeit via a Zoom camera. In his comments at the Marketing in the New Normal session in the Licensing University, Alaina Caldwell, partner, and creative director, Styleworks, expanded on the changes this shift in practice is having how the community is seeing through it.
“Everybody is in this together, we’re trying to juggle our personal lives and our professional lives as they’re intertwining as one, which can be difficult for a lot of people especially right now in a time of need,” says Alaina Caldwell, before acknowledging that the very event he was speaking at, proved these events could be overcome.
A social industry is that’s changing with changing times.
Licensing has always been a social industry. The shake of the hand does much of our industry, but how do you shake hands when you’re not even in the same building?
Cladwell provided some practical examples of how Zoom and Microsoft Teams could still be an interpersonal experience.
“I think one of the major hurdles in our industry is that most of you are very social sales, driven people,” adds Cladwell. “A big part of what brings all of these brands, partnerships, and collaborations together, and to fruition, is the way that they’re presented with your personalities, you’re used to in-person meetings, using those personalities and social abilities to share your brands and products.”
Leaders are taking a look at the home market.
We don’t usually work in our homes; we live in them. If we’re wearing pajamas and leisure to work more often, is that a new market? t Licensing Week Virtual showed how we’re all getting used to making purchases from home, be that buying leisurewear or taking a Yoga class via Zoom, the world has opened up in your own home. During her session, The Day After COVID-19: Consumer and Marketing Trends, Hamutal Schieber, founder and chief executive officer, Schieber Research, described what this new world might look like and what the light at the end of the tunnel might be.
” People will likely go less to gyms, and we’ll look for more curated experiences such as ClassPass and smaller surrounding smaller events,”
What can seem like a dark time for many industries would seem to be a time for growth in the licensing industry? With leaders viewing changes in both technology and attitude, allowing businesses to carry on from home as normal. Well, as normal as possible, perhaps a hopeful sign for other software related industries.