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Download on Digital: Marketing news for April 2020

What’s the latest digital marketing news for April? Well, with COVID-19 impacting everything we do both at home and at work, the Download on Digital is going to be a little different this month.

Advertising is down but digital engagement is up

While ad spend is down by 50% across Facebook, Google Ads, and other key platforms, Comscore reported that social media usage — along with email — is up by ~30%. They also reported that music streaming sites are seeing a 33% increase in daily users, which means companies running audio ads could see increased impressions for the coming months. This stat might come under fire with reports claiming that Spotify is taking a hit, but those numbers are reflecting streams of the Top 200 songs. So, unless you’re exclusively targeting Beliebers, you should be fine.

People care about the Coronavirus

That goes without saying. What’s interesting, though, is that Lumen is reporting that ads placed beside content dealing with COVID-19 are generating 21% more attention than the average ad. Lumen, who specializes in vision tracking, has acknowledged the theory that ads should never be placed with troubling content. Yet, they’re suggesting marketers should be seeking out COVID-19 keywords rather than blacklisting them.

Apart from that, according to a survey conducted by the American Association of Advertising Agencies, 56% of consumers say they want to know what businesses and organizations are doing to weather the storm. So while the internet may have joked about the tsunami of coronavirus-related emails people received from companies, most people were glad to be filled in. All of this to say, if you haven’t connected with customers yet, you should.

Be smart about your marketing

For those with the budget for ads right now, it’s important to reconsider the tone and messaging of your campaign. While audiences are starved for content and the digital advertising landscape is light on competition, you don’t want to appear opportunistic or insensitive. KFC, Geico, and Axe all had to pull ads due to COVID-19 making their jokes a little less funny. While KFC highlighted people licking their fingers, Axe’s ad revolved around people wearing masks to save them from stinky armpits.

Lysol is in a different situation, with people calling them out for simply advertising at all. With sanitizer sold out everywhere, people see the ads as either a tease or a reminder of the dire situation we’re all facing. Perhaps it’s a little harsh, but I get it — what’s the point of advertising when you can’t even keep up with demand?

Make the most of your time

If work has slowed down and you have more free time than you’re used to, take the opportunity to see through that idea you’ve kept on the back burner. We’ve gotten so used to saying, “I’d love to do that, but I really don’t have the time.” Except now, we do have the time. With tradeshows and industry events being cancelled, this is your chance to try a webinar. With people starved for content, we recognized the opportunity to take the Download on Digital to video. With social distancing in effect, it’s the perfect time to scrape the bottom of your to-do list and flesh out your most out-there ideas.

Kyle Weber

Account Manager

Kyle began his career in digital marketing as a graphic designer then shifted his focus towards account management. He paints, writes, and compares his every experience to Seinfeld.

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