So much has happened in a short amount of time. There has been an abundance of headline news on our favorite platform TikTok, spanning everything from banning, buying, journalism and race. Last week also saw app Triller rise to the top of the charts. On the topic of data and privacy, Google announced the “chrome cookie” is finally being phased out and will focus on trust tokens. With all of that going on, do you know what impressed us most? Pharma’s reputation has soared during COVID-19, proving relevance remains a key strategy for helping pharma align with stakeholder expectations.
Winners & Losers: Q2 Earnings Highlights
Living through a quarter inclusive of a pandemic and civil unrest, it would be safe to assume that advertising spend would be down on all platforms. But based on recent earnings calls, the results were mixed: Twitter was down, Facebook was up and Google was in the middle. Twitter ad revenue dropped 23% year-over-year. On the flipside, Facebook saw a 10% ad revenue increase. Even so, it’s worth noting that advertising on the platform is still relatively inexpensive, which can be directly attributed to the economic impact of the pandemic. And on Google, there was a 10% decline in Search and Network year-over-year, whereas YouTube was up 6% year-over-year, highlighting one constant throughout 2020 so far: when it comes to advertising, video reigns supreme.
Up, Up & Up: Pharma is Spending
Medical and pharma ad spending is up: there was a 56% increase in spend year-over-year in May alone. Prescription drug brands are among the largest drivers, with budgets 123% higher than typical spending levels, highlighting telemedicine and PPE. Biotech spend surged with ads targeting professionals with messaging focused on COVID-19 antibodies and testing.
Is the Era of Network TV Heading Off a Cliff?
COVID-19 has accelerated the changing landscape of TV. New streaming platforms quickly emerged (we see you HBO Max, Peacock and Quibi!), and streaming viewership is at an all-time high. As the pandemic continues to put production on hold, many broadcast networks are forced to adjust their fall programming while streaming competitors such as Netflix are seamlessly continuing to parse out their catalogue of shows lined up for release into 2021. Despite the uptick in streaming, newer platforms have premiered with lackluster results. With limited video inventory across mainstream networks and ad-free streaming sites, we’re eager to see the evolution of traditional video advertising on social media platforms and emerging channels.
Social Platforms Seek Treatment for Misinformation
Social platforms have struggled with how to address COVID-19 misinformation, even as understanding of the virus grows around the globe. Recently, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram have taken firmer stances against accounts sharing information on cures proven inaccurate, going as far as banning accounts and adding a “false information” caption on content, respectively. While official policies have not been implemented around COVID-19 misinformation yet, it’s clear that social platforms are working to maintain public confidence amid myriad false claims as the pandemic continues.
Is COVID-19 Driving Micro-influencer Engagement?
The influencer marketing industry is set to reach up to $15 billion by 2022. But as audiences turn more attention to social media, niche or micro-influencers are seeing higher engagement than their macro-influencer counterparts, with 22.2 times more “buying conversations.” The demand for these niche influencers is symbolic of the types of content that audiences want today. Sources: FORBES, BUSINESS INSIDER, BUSINESS 2 COMMUNITY, WWD
Raiinmaker, a new influencer marketing platform that utilizes blockchain technology to provide traceable, secure data transactions, recently rolled out its beta release. As one of the first companies in the industry using this technology, Raiinmaker believes that it will reduce the cost per influencer for brands, better measure impact of campaigns and create a better experience for influencers by rewarding them fractionally based on their engagement and performance.
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