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Long-Term Planning During a Short-Term Crisis: Here’s Why It's Actually a Good Time to Advertise

Your customers are looking for reassurance. A recent study by media group Kantar shows that nearly 80 percent of consumers want to know how companies can help them, and less than 9 percent thought any company should stop advertising. Your firm and your brand has a relationship with your clients and customers. Going dark cuts off that relationship and you lose awareness. Ongoing contact with your audience, even just letting them know you are here and thinking of them, will help your brand, and your business, recover faster as this crisis passes.

Viewership, readership, and online engagement are way up. With the ongoing stay-at-home orders, more people than ever are at home. The study mentioned above showed web browsing is up 70 percent, TV viewing is up by almost two-thirds, and social media is more than 60 percent above normal. This gives you a unique opportunity to reach a larger audience who are ready for contact. On TV. In print. And through the mobile devices we keep close at hand in times like these. Stay in front of them. And make sure your website is updated and the best it can be.

Rates are way down. Despite surges in viewership and online engagement, some businesses are cutting their advertising spend. In turn, we are receiving deep discounts for ad placement. TV stations and digital media are offering bonus airings and ad placements.

Your competition. Odds are excellent that your competition is holding off on any advertising. That leaves a wide open empty space for you to get your message in front of an audience with substantially less competition.

One additional note: The tone of your message is absolutely critical. The very last thing you want to do is give any suggestion that you are exploiting the crisis for self-promotion. Talk to your creative team. They’ll know what to say. (And more importantly, what not to say.)