Advertising in times of Corona: Paper beats screen

With the Corona pandemic, advertising that reaches us at home has regained prominence. But after more than a year of the pandemic, which advertising channels are working and which are not? A study conducted by Intervista on behalf of Swiss Post provides some insight.

In Corona times, addressed advertising gets special attention. (Symbol image)

In the wake of the Corona pandemic, many companies are once again paying closer attention to their spending - including in marketing: advertising expenditure is being cut back or more attention is being paid to the effectiveness of individual channels. In order to provide companies with the best possible support in allocating their advertising expenditure, the market research institute Intervista conducted a study on behalf of Swiss Post in February 2021. In a representative online survey, over 1,000 German-speaking Swiss were asked how their needs and consumer behaviour had changed as a result of Corona - and in particular how they perceive advertising.

Fundamental change in consumer behaviour

Unsurprisingly, there have been fundamental changes since March 2020. Fifty-two percent of respondents say they have changed their consumer behaviour significantly. 18 percent are looking for bargains more often, 20 percent are paying more attention to quality and 30 percent are buying more Swiss products. 44 percent of respondents also assume that their consumption behavior will change (further) - this could therefore be a sustainable change.

Mailbox instead of screen

Working in a home office, which affects 53 percent of those surveyed, can be a trigger for other interesting effects. For example, more than half of 18 to 29-year-olds report feeling screen fatigue more often than not, and one in five of 60 to 79-year-olds. In response, 42 percent of younger people actively make sure they can enjoy screen-free time. One in three in the older age groups does the same.

One consequence of this screen fatigue: 19 percent value reading on paper more today than before the pandemic. In general, the physical is becoming more important - and so is the letterbox. For 54 percent of younger people, mail has become more important during the pandemic, with parcels being the main focus, of course. But the greater importance of the letterbox also has consequences for the effectiveness of advertising channels.

Most noticed: addressed direct mail items

Advertising on websites or search engines is only paid attention to by 18 and 19 percent of respondents respectively. Social networks are also only in the midfield with 26 percent. At 40 percent, advertising on TV is far ahead - also a classic medium that is predominantly consumed at home. However, another channel that is also well known receives the most attention: addressed commercials. 48 percent of respondents say they pay attention to these. And when asked which form of advertising was most likely to inspire them to make a purchase, addressed commercials were also mentioned most frequently, at 57 percent.

"The current situation, in which the home plays a much greater role in people's lives, opens up new opportunities to reach customers directly," explains Oliver Egger, Managing Director Media and Advertising Market at Swiss Post. "However, the changes in consumer behaviour and media use require a rethink in media planning," says Egger.

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