Padilla’s Insights + Strategy and Digital/Social teams scanned the news media and social media conversations surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic to bring you the week’s noteworthy developments:

Social Buzz:

This past weekend, we saw the most sustained conversation on the topic of reopening America, as some governors started the process of reopening and protests against the lockdowns took hold across the U.S.

From our analysis of emoji use on Twitter in relation to the topic, there were two clear camps. Shrugging spanned both groups, each expressing exasperation for the other.

  • Most using the American flag were conservative in nature, praising the President and his bullish approach to reopening the economy
  • Tweets using facepalm, eye-roll and inquisitive emojis were typically from those sharing skepticism and disdain for reopening too soon

As political views enter into the fray, tensions that were already high are finding new outlets of expression and empowering people to have a voice. As the rhetoric of reopening America rages on, misinformation is growing (and will continue to do so).

Sticking to facts and not overpromising are ways to continue to build trust and authenticity. While it’s critical to maintain a supportive tone, it’s also important to understand how this pandemic is becoming polarizing for many.

Media Mapping:

When will America open for business? Media coverage showed that it’s highly subjective to individuals, local and state governments, the White House and medical experts. News over the past week leaned heavily into testing, the White House’s three-stage plan to reopen America and the hyper-cautious optimism of some state governors.

For the first time since we started topic mapping, there seems to be some separation and grouping of similar themes. The debate over President Trump halting funding of the WHO, and racial inequities and tensions around the virus’ spread, were key topics of conversation this week. Reports of several areas in the U.S. planning to reopen, including Florida beaches and Texas state parks, generated a large spike in media coverage.

For more insights on this week’s coronavirus communications analysis:

For questions, guidance or support with your brand’s communication efforts, Padilla’s COVID-19 Response Team is here to help.