COVID-19 MARKET RESEARCH – Adapting To the New Normal

Is it Going to Get Worse before its Better?

According to the May COVID-19 tracker prepared by the Angus Reid Institute, Canadians’ overall perceptions about the crisis have remained negative with a majority feeling that it will get worse before its get better as we enter the Phase 2 of the Pandemic lockdown plan. There is a very high concern that a second wave will occur and things will not get back to normal for at least 6 months.

The Winners and Losers of the Pandemic Lockdown

When asked in the Angus Red survey, which sectors have been hardest hit by the crisis, hotels & tourism, airlines and restaurants top the list. Canadians see grocery stores, technology and telecom providers as sectors who have benefited during this time.  It is anticipated the next wave of employment disruption will be at the municipal government levels as revenue such as parking tickets, license fees, building permits, recreational user fees and parking take a nosedive.

Statistics Canada April’s unemployment figures saw a lost of nearly 2 million jobs and the unemployment rate rose to 13 percent (up from 7.8% in March). The rapid decline that’s happened due to COVID-19 is unprecedented. Canada’s largest cities have been hit hardest. For Montreal, the unemployment rate was 18.2% in April versus a peak of 10.2% during the 2008/09 recession. The unemployment rate in Toronto was 11.1% in April and in Vancouver was 10.8%. The good news in all of this? In April, almost all of the those affected (97%) are on a ‘temporary’ layoff.

Is it time to Advertise Again to Restart your Company?

Advertising is an engine for the economy and needs to rebound fast, but when do you start advertising? Is this time now or should your wait a little longer. If you want to help restart the economy advertising is a good place to start, but of course only of you are still in business. Anything will be better than those irritating government ads on the radio. People are looking for an escape. LOL

According to a survey commissioned by Rogers, Canadians continue to report that they are streaming more TV and watching more cable. However, consumers appetite for different types of news appears to be starting to slow down. When asked which shows they are watching, Tiger King and Ozark top the list. In addition to TV, Canadians are continuing to spend more time online according to Comscore.

Average weekly page views to Rogers Digital properties have more than doubled in March. Their news sites such as Maclean’s have seen triple-digital growth in visits. However, when looking closer at the last week of March page views to news sites declined by -19% while other ‘softer’ categories saw considerable lift including lifestyle (+87%), royalty (+45%), charity (+16%), home décor (+13%), pets (+10%) and food (+6%).

Source:, Rogers Sports and Media, Statistics Canada, Comscore