Tracking the Daily Impact of Coronavirus on Television Advertising

TV viewing should be on the rise due to the coronavirus pandemic leaving millions of Americans housebound.  For direct-to-consumer television campaigns, who are able to measure consumer response and campaign performance in real time, will greater television viewership levels help to sustain the industry or will there be a pull back?  The U.S. economy relies heavily on consumer spending so how consumers respond to this type of advertising in coming days will determine the impact to this 17.8 billion dollar industry sector.  If traditional brand advertisers pull back, will we see more direct-to-consumer advertising filling the gap and, if so, what types?

To help answer these questions, DRMetrix has published a new interactive chart on its website that shows the daily airing count (ad units) for different classifications of direct-to-consumer advertising across 130 national networks monitored by its AdSphere research system.  The chart shows ad units by day beginning March 1 and will update daily.  One can see a recurring decrease in ad units on weekends which is normal.  It may take a week or two before the chart begins to paint a picture of what’s happening.

CLICK PICTURE ABOVE TO SEE LIVE CHART

DRMetrix’s chart shows the ad units for different classifications of the direct-to-consumer television industry as follows:

Traditional Direct Response (“DR”) Campaigns
(These advertisers use differing phone, web, or SMS codes in order to better track consumer results back to specific networks, dayparts, and TV creatives).

Short Form Products – Traditional call-to-order $19.95 types of campaigns.
Lead Generation – Campaigns that don’t advertise the full price of the product or service (ie: call for free information)
28.5 Minute Infomercials – Those late night program length advertisements

Brand/Direct Campaigns
(These advertisers use a single vanity phone or URL which makes it more challenging to measure the immediate impact of television)

Vanity 800 – Campaigns using a vanity 800 call to action
Web/Mobile/SMS – Campaigns that use a vanity web, mobile app, or SMS call to action

To learn more about these classifications, and historical trends over the past 5 years, please download DRMetrix’s latest industry study.

DRMetrix wishes to extend our thoughts and prayers for everyone’s safety and health during these trying times.  As an industry, we will get through this together.  Due to the cancellation of PDMI East, we will be celebrating our industry’s accomplishments, and honoring the top advertisers of 2019, at PDMI West in September.

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3/25/2020 Update – New “Cause of Change” section has been added to the report today.  For each brand classification, the top 10 daily brands are listed with the number of (+) plus or (-) minus ad units compared to the prior day.  Each brand listed includes a clickable play link.  Enjoy!