The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown up a lot of questions and uncertainty in almost every area of life, and one such area is marketing and advertising. Marketing departments around the world have had to grapple with the effects of the pandemic, working out how to navigate this unprecedented situation.

There is no ‘one size fits all’ approach, or single ‘right’ answer – and as such, individual businesses are having to create their own unique responses to the pandemic, taking into account their own parameters and perspectives. However, companies that deal with digital advertising– such as James Hopkins Coaching Limited – know that there are some actions and approaches that can be widely adopted to ensure that online ads and marketing are seen as appropriate, safe and suitable.

In a recent survey, 73% of consumers said they had noticed a change in the types of online content they are consuming during the COVID-19 pandemic. 82% of consumers are seeking out more online news and content that relates to the pandemic, while 87% are consuming more general news thanks to coronavirus. Additionally, the survey showed that there was a varied response to the ads that had been displayed alongside coronavirus content, with 31% of consumers saying that branded ads appearing next to coronavirus content were suitable or appropriate ‘depending on the brand’.

Advice for Advertisers During COVID-19

In light of this information, advertisers can find opportunities for advertising during the pandemic. Rather than having an ‘all or nothing’ approach to advertising and publishing coronavirus content, it is better to find relevant and appropriate opportunities for ‘leaning in’ to the great deal of high-quality online coronavirus content that is being produced and consumed.

Advertisers are encouraged to revisit their keyword lists, updating them frequently to reflect the most recent news and developments. Advertisers should also consider refining their brand’s safety and suitability strategies, adapting to the ever-changing global situation and aiming for more precision in this area.

Brands are able to use granular controls to choose where their brand does and does not appear online. This gives brands the confidence of knowing that they will only be advertised alongside content that they approve of. According to research, only 16% of consumers said that they are not likely to engage with adverts that appear near coronavirus content, and many are keen to see content and ads from health, pharmaceutical and government organisations alongside coronavirus content. It is worth noting that, understandably, consumers are not keen on seeing food, beverage or travel brands alongside content that relates to the pandemic.