What Are People Looking Forward to Most, Post-pandemic?

A feature on research conducted by Kantar

Living through the recent lockdown, citizens are starting to realise what they are missing. As Boris Yeltsin said in 2003, “We don’t appreciate what we have until it’s gone. Freedom is like that. It’s like air. When you have it, you don’t notice it.” So, what are people most looking forward to doing after COVID-19?

Kantar applied human and artificial intelligence to social media conversations around COVID-19 to identify what people are most looking-forward to doing after lockdown.

You would think that seeing friends and family would be the most anticipated activity people are looking forward to. It is in some respect, with hanging out and doing things with our friends and family present in 10 out of the top 12 activities they identified. Going to visit, see and spend time with family and friends is also a category in its own right. However, it is not the top one. Here is Kantar’s count-down of post COVID’s most wanted activities.


Kantar Research on What People are Looking Forward to Post-Pandemic




What people want to do after lockdown is get some beauty therapy. This includes going to the barber, salon, getting our hair cut / dyed, having our nails or eyebrows done. As one user aptly summarised “my eyebrows and nails have gone rogue”. So, if you own a hairdressing business or beauty salon, prepare for a boom in business once quarantine is over. We might also expect to see an increase in demand for beauty and make-up products. For brands looking to reconnect with consumers it is going to be about demonstrating the value of the brand experience.


2.Eating Out

“First thing I’m doing when this quarantine is over is going out to eat!!”

Many people want to head straight to their favourite restaurant and feast on their favourite food. The meals people seem to be looking forward to most are Sushi, Mexican, Steaks, Ribs, Seafood and Pizza. Some of the comments combined eating out with catching a movie. People are also looking forward to take-away food.


3.A Night Out

Clubs, pubs and alcoholic drinks brands will be pleased to hear that a night out is high on list of post-COVID activities. This could be on a date or with friends, but for many it means having a post COVID-19 party.


4.Festival and gigs

With festival season almost upon us, but with all the main events cancelled, it’s no wonder that the public craves live music. Experiencing one’s favourite band live again is high on the priority list. Some are already considering booking tickets and looking forward to tours. Expect any live shows and performances to be sold out, quickly.


 5.No changes

Staying at home suits some people just fine. They quite enjoy being alone, reading, watching Netflix or playing video games and seem to be enjoying the same thing during the lockdown as they would normally do… and will do the same after.


6.The Outdoors

Going to the beach and enjoying the experience is among the activities consumers crave, including reconnecting with nature. After one week, the thought of a prolonged quarantine is already giving these people itchy feet. Beaches, national parks, and mountain resorts/lodges be prepared for many people taking road trips to escape the confines of their city abodes.


 7.Retail therapy

Online shopping is still possible but not quite scratching the itch. The thought of shopping in retail outlets, trying on and buying new outfits, is far more appealing. This is good news for high street fashion retailers with some of the sensory experience of traditional shopping being essential to fashion-conscious consumers.



After just a week, people are already starting to think about their next vacation. Many just want to jump on plane or book a flight with no specific destination in mind. It is too early to say, but airlines could expect significant bounce back as desire for an escape, anywhere, will lead to heightened demand. Some people are already booking trips, giving them something to look forward to.


9. Sporting events

Watching or playing sport is also top of the list for some people. With loyal fan bases, most sports will undoubtedly experience a bounce back. What will be interesting is what the impact of COVID-19 has on sports participation. Time will tell if the quarantine has motivated more people to take up a sport. Some people also just want to get back to their routines, go to work or go to the gym.. the things we perhaps took for granted.



One thing is for sure: social media posts strongly indicate an inherent desire for social interaction. While people are resorting to video conference and video calling apps, it is clear that social interactions are a key priority.

As we likely near the end of lockdown, the marketing and communication industry has a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to create engaging, entertaining, brand-building and above all memorable content. The challenge will be to strike the right balance and stand out.



Source – Kantar (What are people looking forward to most, post-pandemic?)

The Best of Super Bowl 2020

The Super Bowl is an annual sporting event for die-hard football fans, general sports enthusiasts and businesses.

It is one of the the most-watched program on television in the United States and the second most-watched program worldwide, uniting all things pop culture – sports, music, movies and ads, all vying for attention and February fame.

For years, film studios pay millions of dollars to secure a chance to get as many eyes as possible on the latest upcoming movies, while advertisers throw as much for a 30-second spot to air commercials as a means of building awareness for their products and services.

Commercials played during the Super Bowl have also developed a reputation for being memorable, funny and clever, with people who are not interested in the game tuning in during breaks to solely watch the commercials.

This year’s ad bowl was once again just as intense as the match on the field – featuring familiar names and a few new ones, including Facebook’s first big game spot. According to analytics firm Kantar, it was the largest ever in terms of in-game ad spend, with marketers spending an estimated $435 million, and interestingly, according to Bain, the percentage of spots including women was up 90% from 74% last year.


Here’s some of the most trending content from Super Bowl 2020:


Movie Trailers

Release Date: March 26, 2020


No Time To Die
Release Date: April 2, 2020


Black Widow
Release Date: April 30, 2020


Fast and Furious 9
Release Date: May 21, 2020


Top Gun: Maverick
Release Date:  June 25, 2020


Click here to check out other movie trailers that aired during Super Bowl 2020




Amazon’s spot – starring celebrity couple Ellen DeGeneres and Portia de Rossi, imagines what life was like without Alexa. According to Google, it was the most-watched Super Bowl commercial as of 10pm on game day, and according to Brandwatch, it had more than 39,000 mentions online as of 10:15pm.



Google’s tearjerker about its virtual assistant helping a man remember his late wife was the most effective ad, according to Unruly.

Nearly half of survey respondents had an intense emotional reaction to “Loretta,” and the ad scored 6.5 out of 10. It also had more than 121,000 online mentions, per Brandwatch, with 10,000 of those mentions coming within two minutes of the ad airing.



According to Talkwalker, Jeep’s recreation of ‘Groundhog Day’ – featuring Bill Murray, got more than 47,000 online mentions, accounting for nearly 6% of the entire conversation around the Super Bowl.

It also received a score of 5.2 from System1, which rates ads from 1 to 5.9 based on the emotional resonance they garner to predict long-term growth potential for the brand.



Microsoft’s Super Bowl ad featured the first female – and openly LGBTQ – coach to ever be in the NFL championship game.

The ad elicited intense emotional engagement from 47% of Unruly’s survey audience – obtaining a score of 5.7, and got 5.3 stars from System1.



Olay’s all-female Super Bowl spot featured successful women asking “Is there enough space in space for women?” and pledged to donate $1 to Women Who Code for every tweet directed @OlaySkin with the hashtag #MakeSpaceforWomen.

Olay captured nearly 20% of the conversation around the Super Bowl, according to Talkwalker. The hashtag #MakeSpaceForWomen was being used even before the game, but spiked again during the broadcast.

Benjamin Hordell, partner at ad agency DXAgency, called it “the best social integration,” saying that “incentivizing the tweet was a nice way to make it happen.”


Click here to check out other leading brand commercials that aired during Super Bowl 2020




Sources: Adweek, Digital Trends, Screen Rant, Business Insider, Wonderopolis and The Drum

What the Wider Ad Industry Can Learn From the Cinema Experience

Serving effective ads which simultaneously enhance viewer experience is a perennial goal of the advertising industry, however in tough times it is often the bottom line that receives all the focus, shuffling consumers down the pecking order. This in turn can raise the risk of customers turning to ad-free subscription services and ad blockers.

Writing exclusively for ExchangeWire – provider of global data and insight on Marketing Technology, Advertising Technology and Programmatic Advertising, Mark Inskip, CEO – Media Division at Kantar, discusses what lessons from cinema advertising can be applied to other platforms in ensuring memorable and fruitful ads, without compromising user engagement.

Those in the ad industry are living in challenging times. Last month’s IPA Bellwether Report showed overall ad spend flatlining, whilst Kantar’s own DIMENSION report of 1,000 connected consumers in the UK revealed that 55% are completely apathetic about advertising.

But it’s far from bad news across the board. Internet spend continues to rocket, and some spheres of advertising remain very much enjoyed and celebrated. Cinema, in particular, is bucking the trend, with 37% of consumers surveyed for DIMENSION saying they actively enjoy advertising at the cinema. That means an appetite still exists for entertaining brand campaigns, and offers interesting insights for brands and marketers looking to get their advertising ‘right’.

So what makes the big screen so successful, and how can we take those learnings to other platforms and touchpoints?


Make it Seamless

Think of the context in which you see cinema ads: plied with popcorn, lights dimming, you know exactly what to expect, when to expect it, and perhaps even how long to expect it for. Indeed, it’s part of the value exchange, in exchange for your ticket, you accept a certain (proportional) amount of advertising.

However, you’d never expect to see the same ad several times, or indeed have your film interrupted at a crucial scene by an irrelevant advert. And yet an enormous 70% of those we surveyed have experienced just that, admitting they’re subjected to the same adverts time and time again. This isn’t just a mild inconvenience, but an issue throughout all platforms and formats. As Video-On-Demand (VOD) grows, for example, we’re seeing more and more broadcasters struggle with the right ratio of ads to content, trying to find a balance between what’s profitable and what’s consumer-friendly. Given repeated negative experiences are damaging to brand reputation, that equilibrium is crucial.

The underlying message here is that context really matters, and that goes beyond just online and video ads. As brands delve deeper into formats like product placement, sponsorship, advertorials and the like, even the more subtle forms of consumer engagement need to be well considered so as not to be jarring.

Ultimately, if we want consumers to move past their apathy and actually engage with ads rather than avoid them, it’s crucial we approach at the right place and time, and the right frequency, so we’re not talking to a brick wall.



Make it Entertaining

Audiences are in fact much more receptive than you might think: a significant 48% of consumers do notice ads on platforms they enjoy using, whilst 41% are more likely to believe advertising that appears near another trusted brand. That means platform, placement, and timing are crucial.

Cinema gets this right. From trailers which make your hair stand on end, to full features in 3D, or even space-aged 4D, cinema elevates films to sensory experiences and takes content to the next level. After all, if it didn’t, you’d stay at home.

Of course, every platform has its own strengths, a one-size-fits all approach won’t do. But if brands can get into the right headspace and engage consumers on their terms, providing top-quality entertainment within the right context, whether an innovative format, interactive experience, or by offering actionable information, their campaigns are far more likely to succeed.



Make it Tailored

You’d never run an 18+ trailer before the screening of a U-rated film. It might sound simple, but this fairly basic level of tailoring and targeting doesn’t always trickle through to the small screen or the browser – leading to irritated consumers at best and brand safety failures at worst if content ends up in the wrong environment. 61% of the consumers we surveyed actively prefer to see ads relevant to their own interests, but the average experience leaves much to be desired. That means there’s a significant discrepancy between what consumers want and what they’re getting.

A key part of the solution is accurate targeting and measurement. To gain insights on how to create seamless, entertaining, useful advertising, brands need to give up guessing and find out exactly who their audiences are and what makes them tick – on as granular a level as possible. That means harnessing detailed customer data or working with a reliable data partner.

A positive feedback loop driven by insights will lead to exponentially better campaigns. Remember, however, that data use must be responsible; with 54% of consumers objecting to targeting based on their past activity, it’s important the value exchange for consumers is made clear so they feel supported, not surveilled.



Curtain Call

Of course, some elements of the big screen experience aren’t easily transported to the home environment, but the message is clear. Producing and serving exciting, entertaining and useful content at the right time, in the right place is key to capturing and keeping eyeballs, and accurate measurement is a key part of making sure we’re going in the right direction.

Getting consumers onside is tough, but in an era where avoiding advertising is perhaps easier than ever, it’s extremely important. Intriguing, delighting and informing is a sure-fire way to neutralise the ongoing impact of adblocking and ad-free subscription services.

Cinema advertising makes the most of its space, creative and audience to deliver gripping content, showing us advertising at its very best. With a little bit of nous, a touch of creative, and top-of-the-class measurement, we can aim to make every ad as good as on the big screen.



Source: ExchangeWire