The coronavirus is impacting businesses and people alike. Today, the focus of people and businesses is rapidly shifting to caution and concern for the rapidly spreading pandemic. With the increasing outbreak of the virus worldwide, many companies are forced to restructure their business functionalities to stay up and running. Undoubtedly for almost every country, the health of the population is the primary concern.
COVID-19 – the novel disease has put almost every country on alert and has shaken the global economy across APAC, US, and Europe. As per WARC, there has been a slower performance on social advertising spend growth in 2019- reaching down to $17.9 billion in Q1. Despite this, e-commerce advertising spends to grow up by 17.7% and social media spending to increase by 22.2%.
Over the past week, Dentsu Aegis Network (DAN) has recently surveyed about 155 clients and client leaders in China – to understand the short-term and long-term impact of COVID 19 on marketing. Nearly 47% of businesses reported that their sales had severely impacted by the outbreak. However, as this is an early stage, only 7% confirmed about stopping ad spend ultimately.
The geographic focus of the activity has been a shift for businesses, with 22% businesses saying they have already shifted their creative and regional focus. And for obvious reasons, people spending more time at home at present. Thus many brands have reported having changed spend from offline media to online – 14% said that they had moved the budget from offline media. Clearly, with the on-going crisis, brands should also take an approach around reputation and helping the customers with the misfortune.
With the world stock market seemingly in a downward spiral tizzy, it appears that the marketing trends are expected to adopt more into e-commerce and live-streaming. According to DAN, most of the strategy shifts are for short-term, though – with 61% making changes for the near-term and 9% making amends for the long-term plans. Moving forward, if the situation worsens, concerns rise that the virus could notably impact the lives of people and as well the world economy.
Chris Stephenson, APAC Head of Strategy and Planning at PHD as reported to have saying to The Drum – “In developing a response, it is important to be sensitive in brand messaging to the situation – brands should follow media consumption patterns to optimize media splits and take into account the context of placement as well as absolute reach potentials of increased home video or digital media consumption. With digital socializing on the increase as more people stay at home, consider leveraging increased time spent by increasing budgets to social channels and ensure the right content and social assets are available.”
Likewise, Cheuk Chiang, DAN’s Chief executive for Greater North Asia, mentioned in a statement, “Brands that take a utility approach to the promotion will better connect. From a media investment perspective, we’re re-evaluating out of home placements and will increase investment in digital channels especially short video and social platforms with a focus on driving to commerce.”