Ahead Of The Game

The Media Times

By Kym McMutrie Kym McMutrie - Aug 31, 2020
By Kym McMutrie Kym McMutrie - Aug 31, 2020

Ahead Of The Game

The Media Times

Will the extraordinary become the new normal? Only time will tell.

In the meantime, how can we make use of the abundance of research available on how Covid-19 has affected “normal” life and will continue to do so?

As the global pandemic impacts our daily lives to varying degrees, we strive to achieve some normality, but our thinking has been somewhat governed by the various restrictions placed upon us. How we consume media and our behavioural habits behind this has of course changed, but will it be permanent?

The sofa for example is no longer an oasis of guilt, but a small comfort amongst the uncomfortable and so, what better place is there to consume vast amounts of media?

The pandemic of 2020 has put the world in front of their screens like never before;

streaming services are up 54%, news coverage up 56%, live videos up 51%, time spent on social media has increased 43%, and broadcast TV up 39%.

GWI Coronavirus Research July 2020 indicates that some of these will be expected permanent global habit changes, generally up 20%+.

Imagine the frustration for media outlets to see consumption surging ahead in unprecedented numbers, yet advertising revenue has taken a hit?

No doubt you are thinking “I still see plenty of advertising out there!”

This is true (particularly video and screen) and in fact, those that have been less

affected by the outbreak (home improvements, electronics, whitegoods, insurance, community services etc.) are currently investing more dollars in advertising and in turn, reaping the rewards.

Others that have seen an opportunity to invest in their marketing (despite their businesses being impacted), are now finding not only do they have a greater share of voice but more importantly, a greater share of consumer spending.

The good news for our beloved media outlets is the back half of 2020 is looking to rebound in a big way; history shows us that a large decline in advertising is always followed by a large increase in advertising.

Those who have taken the plunge and invested will want to continue the momentum gained, those who have been dormant will want to start making some noise and delayed campaigns will be brought to market, driving far stronger demand.

It is expected that in the future we will be spending more time socializing as a family/household; more time cooking, more time on hobbies and pastimes….that has to be good, doesn’t it?

Understandably, some people are becoming worried about how much time they are dedicating to their screens. However, research suggests that screen time itself is no cause for concern; rather it’s the content we choose to consume that can have a significant impact our psychological well-being.

Perhaps most intriguingly, the TV shows and movies that are increasing in popularity on Netflix are about pandemics—which could signify the need for people to fictionalize the chaos we find ourselves in.

Regardless of what type of content we are consuming, the fact is that every generation has come to rely on their devices more than ever before; whether to inform, occupy or distract. Surely any business has to take the opportunity created here, to engage with a captive audience like never before?

Nobody knows how long the pandemic will last, or how permanent the affect may be.
So why not use what we do know right now and get in front of people whilst they’re still looking for comfort on the couch?

Source: GWI Corona Virus Research July 2020, Visual Capitalist