A new survey from FreeWheel has found that 80% of Americans say they’re spending more time watching TV and streaming video during the pandemic. The results are the latest to find that screen time is up as viewers shelter-at-home. In the survey, 49% of respondents cited News as what they’re watching more of, followed closely by Comedies (48%) and Dramas (41%). Sports was last with 7%, not surprising given the absence of live sports.
FreeWheel also probed viewers’ attitudes toward advertising during the pandemic and found an overwhelming 9 out of 10 said advertising is still appropriate. However, half of these respondents said only certain types of ads are appropriate. Almost 60% said advertisers should incorporate specific virus messaging into their ads, but the caveat is that it must be done tastefully.
Another 25% of respondents said advertisers should avoid virus messaging altogether. Just over 40% of respondents said ads with virus messaging can yield positive feelings about the advertiser’s brand, while 34% said it wouldn’t change their feelings for the brand and 15% said it creates negative feelings. Clearly there is a pretty wide distribution of reactions, which should prompt advertisers to proceed cautiously.
Finally, the survey found that 51% of respondents said they’re most open to ads from the food and beverage industry, followed by financial (28%) and technology (24%).
An infographic with all the data can be accessed here. The survey was conducted in April by Survey Monkey of over 1,000 consumers.
If you want to access a spectrum of high-quality, free research that’s been released by industry providers, check out our Coronavirus Video Industry Research Hub.