Costco Banned from Selling Non-essentials

Some stores face prohibition

Certain Costcos, Targets, and Walmarts are not allowed to sell non-essential items, in efforts of decreasing foot traffic and minimizing the spread of Covid19.

Some employees complained that people would come to the stores because they’re bored from staying at home. It makes sense on one hand, and on the other, it really doesn’t sound like it will be as effective as they’re making it out to be.

This sounds like another power move just to make people “feel better” that there’s an active effort. I think these don’t serve the mass public as much as real efforts, like figuring out how to reopen stores while keeping everyone safe.

What do you think?

Conspiring to Reopen

California, Washington, and Oregon team up

I’m a huge fan of unifying.

It looks like California, Washington, and Oregon are teaming up to create the Western States Pact to stop the spread of Covid19 while creating a plan to reopen for business in May.

I’m not sure how this will exactly work, or why it’s only a “west coast” thing, but if it allows for new measures to close borders, and prevent flights from other states, including international tourists, then I think this will be extremely effective. Once effective, other states can form groups, and once groups are successful, we’ll eventually join all together.

I think this can be a brilliant plan, but it required prime government efficiency, which is somewhat of a rarity. Eliminate restrictions, and repeal nonsense taxes like the gas tax and AB5. The elimination of restrictions can help small businesses prevail.

What else can the states do to ensure the success of this pact?

Loan Deferments

Car loans, student loans, and mortgages deferred

If you haven’t heard yet, nearly all banks are participating in deferment programs for auto loans, mortgages, and student loans to provide relief.

My credit union, San Diego County Credit Union, is offering 3 months for auto loans, and 6 months for mortgages. I’m sure these all can be extended if the quarantine continues, although recent stats show that it may be ending in May.

If you use Canon financials to lease one of their cinema cameras, there’s a 3 month period where you can delay payments, a first for Canon or any camera company that I’m aware of.

What does this reveal to me? It tells me that financial institutions are trying to help, but they may also be afraid of mass defaults. This is their way of trying to prevent it from coming down to that and preserve consumer trust. It won’t last forever, but it may work for the short-term.

Any other way for them to help?

Lawyer Deals

Discounts and caps

I was listening to talk radio today, and heard a commercial from a law firm serving men with their divorce and child custody cases. What caught me off guard was they were offering a discount, and a “cap,” meaning they would give you an estimate and cap it so you would never pay more than the cap.

I know this is primarily for marketing and there’s some fine print for it, but it still sounded like a great way to get potential clients during the Corona times.

Have you heard of law firms advertising caps?

Las Vegas to Reopen!?!

Las Vegas scheduled for reopening

I honestly didn’t think Vegas would be the first to schedule a “grand reopening” following the Coronavirus.

According to John Mehaffey, the strip is scheduled to reopen on May 1st, with hotels already offering deals for the opening dates.

I think one of the most powerful groups with influence are the casino owners and lobbyists- so it makes sense they may be pushing for some kind of exemption or authority to reopen. With the national curve evening out in general, it does look optimistic that we’ll be getting back to “economic normalcy” perhaps by summer. Let’s see what happens on May 1st.

Do you think Vegas really will reopen on May 1st?

Mall Stores Reopen!

Reports of some stores reopening in Socal malls

I just got word from an employee at a store inside a Socal mall that certain stores have reopened. These stores are allowing shoppers to come in a certain amount at a time, but these stores are not “essential.”

The question now is does our curve we’ve been working so hard to flatten continue to rise again? All the quarantining down the drain? And how do stores get the ability to reopen under the state’s orders to close all non-essentials?

Have you seen any stores open when they should not have?

The Effects of Covid for Funerals

Social distancing at a funeral

A friend’s mother passed away the other day, and I learned that the funeral was limited to a maximum of 8 people. This just further goes to show the impacts of Covid, and how a spouse, in some areas, are prohibited to even accompany their pregnant wife into the maternity ward.

Imagine giving brith while your significant other is coaching you through Zoom? How horrific.

Are there other impacts of Covid which we may have overlooked in the short-term?

Car Dealerships- Covid Sales

Car dealerships remain open

I was a bit surprised to learn car dealerships are still open. I wasn’t surprised that they’re “essential,” but that people are looking to purchase cars currently with all the financial instability.

Nevertheless, dealerships in San Diego are offering a “no contact experience.” I’m not entirely sure if all this means is that you’ll forego a handshake, or if prices are more directly revealed instead of the back and forth with the dealer manager until a “compromise” is reached.

I would think that they would be doing all they can to move units, especially with the future of sales being so uncertain. But with interest rates so low, it may be the best time to make a purchase if you still have a steady job and a need for a new vehicle.

Do you think dealerships will close around town or will people take advantage of the low interest rates?

Will Theaters Ever Reopen?

Some certainly will not

Theaters have been hurting for a while now, thanks to streaming services. It’s easier than ever to access large 4K TVs, surround sound, and popcorn- so why even go to the theaters for a $20 ticket, and $30 popcorn and drinks?

It’s always been for the “experience.”

But this has come at a cost, and you could tell by innovative marketing tactics, like memberships for all access passes. But with Covid19, certain branches like AMC claim they may not reopen without a government bailout.

I think other theaters will follow suit, as when things do reopen, people are going to generally by fearful of being in a close area for 2 hours. On top of that, watching a movie with a mask on the entire time may not be a viable option.

Let’s hope for the best, but also be prepared for the possibility of the end of an era.

Less Ads- What We’ve Always Wanted

Corona causing fewer commercials

A silver lining.

Advertisers are opting for fewer commercials, at least throughout NBCUniversal.

The reason is somewhat obvious- there may be less money to spend, but there are less things to advertise. You can’t run a Macy’s ad telling people to flock to Macy’s- no stores are open. A beer commercial might still work right now, but is it appropriate?

If this quarantine continues, and marketers want to continue to market, they may need to adapt to the needs of people today. And we know some companies, like those producing toilet paper, can probably just sit back and do nothing during these times.

Do you see any adaptive changes emerging soon?