GroupM agency MediaCom is out with a new report advising brands on steps they should take as the COVID-19 pandemic eases in the U.S.
Key takeaways include the fact that the country will reopen in stages and by region, so brands need to adjust marketing strategies accordingly.
And when it comes to media spending, the advice is to overspend if possible and try to avoid going dark.
I know -- what else would you expect a media agency to conclude, right? Still, studies indicate that going completely dark can be disastrous for a brand.
The study addresses behavioral “paradoxes” that consumers will engage in as the country emerges from shutdown. For example, conspicuous consumption is out and conscious spending is in as 58% of consumers say they’re more mindful now of how they spend money.
Brands are advised to position as “a brand for everyone," and to communicate "with empathy and reliability.”
On the flip side, the report warns brands to expect so-called “revenge spending” by consumers who will overcompensate for the lack of spending opportunities during the shutdown. The agency reports that such activity is trending in China right now as that country reopens.
The advice for brands looking to capture revenge spending is to position as aspirational or indulgent and utilize “inspiring” media environments.
Other emerging paradoxical behaviors include a fear of going out even as restrictions lift, versus a “you only live once” mindset. Also: the embrace of social distancing versus new ways to connect.
Pampering, eating out and nights out with friends are the top activities that consumers look forward to after lockdown, per the report.
As to longer-term behavior, 75% of Americans say they plan to exercise more -- which, as we all know from the many New Year's resolutions we’ve all made, is easier said than done.