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Consumers Want Us To Keep Advertising During COVID-19

GDR gives you the lowdown on current marketing statistics as we see  COVID-19 restrictions lifted.


It’s two months since the Great Lockdown began, information and restrictions concerning the coronavirus are still changing daily. It can all get a bit confusing in terms of how we should continue marketing as SMBs. GDR has collated top level statistics to keep us moving forward together.




Influencer Marketing Hub released their Coronavirus (COVID-19) Marketing & Ad Spend Impact report on 30 April pulling together statistics from their March 2020 survey involving 237 brands. It’s not a surprise that they lead with a 69% decrease of advertising spend with Google and Facebook now predicting a loss of $44 billion (USD) in worldwide ad revenue.

74% of brands surveyed by Influencer Marketing Hub also said they are posting less on their company social accounts. We certainly were at GDR two months ago but we’re bouncing back and with good reason. To remain relevant, visible and here to help you.

We’re not alone. 1 out of 4 companies declare that they will increase marketing activities. 41% intend to make use of the momentum to maintain or increase their presence in the media.




Kantar surveyed 35,000 consumers and 92% want us to keep advertising during COVID-19. So, should we really be decreasing ad spend? The answer is not simple but consumers believe that it shouldn’t be business as usual for marketers and advertisers. 78% of consumers think brands should help them in their daily lives. 75% say that brands should inform people of what they’re doing, and 74% think companies should not exploit the situation. Another reason to change tact, continue to communicate with our customers and take note of the Government’s latest advice to start taking steps to reopen safely as Australia flattens the coronavirus curve.



As we adjust our content plans and increase our social media marketing what do current trends show?




Despite more people being at home, using the internet, there has been a drop in social media engagement. This is not consistent across all social networks, however. Instagram has suffered most overall, with a 14% drop in engagement rate by follower for the week ending March 11 versus the previous three weeks. Facebook isn’t far behind, with a 13.5% drop. Twitter has performed better, with only a 7% drop. Perhaps people are still turning to Twitter for critical information and news, and then retweeting and discussing these topics?

On the flipside the retail industry have reported a rise in Email Open Rates by 25% Week-on-Week.
Daily email open rates are generally increasing by 5-10% each week. We can only assume that people have more time on their hands at the moment and can devote more of it to opening and reading their emails. Another related change is that email opens and interactions have increased more on desktop than mobile. With people working at home on their laptops, which they use to check their emails, rather than their smartphones, as they have previously. Reading email communications on the desktop provides a less distracting browsing experience than on mobile devices, and consumers are taking more time to read longer content.




  • 161.4% increase in traffic to supermarket websites in March 2020, compared to just a month earlier
  • Media and telecom websites have also seen an increase in popularity with Netflix alone reporting 15 million new subscribers worldwide due to COVID-19
  • The biggest eCommerce losers have been entertainment/events (-57.3%) and tourism (-56.8%).

Travel and tourism is of the hardest hit industries in the world with an expected loss of $820 Billion (USD) this year and Australia reporting an estimated loss of $9 billion (AUD) per month. Unsurprisingly there has been 65% decrease in ad spend by the travel sector.

But will this narrative change before the year is out? As restrictions start to lift and we plan our escape reports show international travel may be off the cards until 2021 (except for perhaps New Zealand). Consumers will inevitably look closer to home for their next vacation. Should the travel industry begin to prepare ads for winter sun on the Gold Coast rather than holidaying in the Mediterranean?

All food for thought as we continue to survive and evolve but what is clear is that consumers want us to keep advertising as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.


Get in touch with GDR today to continue the conversation and find out how you can keep advertising during COVID-19:



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