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Life after lockdown, what happens now?

It looks like the road map is finally taking us where we want (and need) to be. And, thanks to the successful vaccine rollout, we seem to have turned the corner.

How we all emerge from lockdown remains to be seen. I think there will be a mixed bag: those who can’t wait to make up for lost time in terms of holidays, socialising and shopping while others still feel very cautious and plan to take baby steps. There is also a divide between saving and spending with 2 out of 5 people being better off since lockdown; some are keen to continue to save, given we don’t know what’s round the corner, while others can’t wait to splash out in a ‘life’s too short’ fashion.

We have already seen a change to results in press as retail has opened up again which is to be expected. People out shopping at weekends (less time to read newspapers) and of course buying on the high street once more taking some sales away from online, and this is much more noticeable in the 18-34s. One thing is certain though, there are new online shoppers to be capitalised upon, particularly in the 60+ sector, who aren’t keen to go back into shops, so some businesses can look forward to strong cost per new customer figures and building repeat customers here too.

Online shopping during lockdown has grown substantially amongst the 60+

Many mail order businesses have seen a real boom during the past 14 months and are keen to sustain these figures and learn as much as possible about how to keep driving growth. Other businesses that rely on home appointments are looking forward to dealing with backed-up demand. I think it will be an interesting and exciting six months.

TV will remain strong as working from home continues for many, even if on a part time basis, which will impact on the daytime viewing figures and quality of audience. Magazine subscriptions remain high and some sectors such as gardening and home interest in particular will be great for advertisers.

Newspapers still reach millions of people every day and Metro are now back up to distributing over 1m copies – lockdown pricing will crawl back up I am sure but there are still great deals to be done. Inserts that get into the home always work best and with mail order and magazine subs increasing it really is a buyer’s market.

I don’t think the media landscape has been stronger in the last ten years for advertisers so it is about tailoring the right plan. I read the following quote which I think sums up where we are right now: “We’re all battling the same storm, we are just in different boats”.

Alice Buttling, Managing Director & Media Director