Social media marketing as a branding strategy in extraordinary times: Lessons from the covid‐19 pandemic

Sanne Ichelle Dubbelink*, Carolina Herrando Soria, Efthymios Constantinides

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

26 Citations (Scopus)
606 Downloads (Pure)


This review expands our insight into the ways the required adaptation to digital channels caused by COVID‐19 has affected the creation of brand equity through social media marketing. Based on a systematic literature review, we propose a conceptual framework that answers the fol-lowing research question: How can businesses, amidst and after the COVID‐19 pandemic, adapt their social media marketing strategy to create positive brand equity? The conceptual framework describes four components as the basis for a potential social media marketing strategy. First, (1) businesses need to develop a clear perspective on their current social media marketing activities, and (2) evaluate current branding elements. Based on this, (3) the timeline of marketing activities must be postponed or adapted to the needs of consumers. Lastly, (4) businesses must adapt their messaging to show empathy and deliver relevant information. Within this process, governmental parties, financial institutions, influencers, and consumers are identified as stakeholders who influence and assist businesses in optimizing their social media marketing strategy. These findings are relevant for academics and businesses to further understand the long‐term effects of COVID‐19 on social media marketing. Additionally, they highlight that the roles of online channels and the consumer are expanding in the future.

Original languageEnglish
Article number10310
JournalSustainability (Switzerland)
Issue number18
Publication statusPublished - 15 Sept 2021


  • Brand equity
  • Consumer behavior
  • COVID‐19
  • Customer experience
  • Social media marketing
  • UT-Gold-D
  • Digital Marketing


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