Government Communications Planning for COVID-19 Recovery


During this unprecedented global pandemic, WPP’s agencies are working with government communicators now during the Acute Outbreak phase to begin to plan for new approaches in communication and citizen engagement in the Recovery phase. In some cases, these new approaches are already in place but now need to rapidly deploy and scale. WPP’s agencies will also leverage future scenario planning frameworks to consider the implications of this pandemic experience on how to meet policy objectives and missions in the New Normal phase.

Key considerations for the New Normal phase include:

• How has citizen trust and confidence in my government and my organisation been impacted by the COVID-19 response?

• How has the citizen journey changed for good? Can emotive support and deep connections be built digitally?

• How does our mission relate to citizens’ need to refocus and plan for their own future?

• How are currently used behaviour change models impacted?

• Can opportunities to engage directly with citizens rather than via the news media be developed?

• What does a workforce more adept at working from home mean for willingness to engage in virtual community events?

• Can data analytics solve the gaps created by lower rates of in person or one on one engagement?

Additional Background

WPP’s specialist communications agencies work with over 70 countries globally. This paper reviews some of the challenges that we are planning for today for deployment in the Recovery phase, with additional considerations offered for future scenario planning and action plans for the New Normal phase.