Brands Develop a “New Normal” for TV Ad Creative

Inside the Report

Brands and organizations continue to reframe creative with a COVID-19 tone that has progressed from a PSA style around getting through the situation, to now including social norms (ie. masks and distance) in the storyboard.

Production also has been impacted, with brands embracing iPhone cuts, user-generated content (UGC) and an approach that accounts for the changes in our new day-to-day — and also how those differ from market to market. As each states and city has different standards for being open/closed, national ads must reflect this reality and address the entire U.S. audience as much as possible.

The return of live sports in July also began a gradual shift away from the scatter of the early pandemic and into a TV environment that looked a little more like what we’re used to. Add in ongoing election news, social unrest and the pandemic’s continued presence, and Q3 had countless reasons for audiences to stay tuned to TV.

The third quarter saw some trends continue — like insurance brands continuing to increase impressions — while others emerged, like back-to-school ads focusing on flexibility regardless of what learning looked like for kids this fall. 

Among the top industries, as measured by iSpot, in terms of impressions increases in Q3: Education (67%), Home & Real Estate (33%) and Health & Beauty (30%). Education brands have delivered more impressions as they work to help customers respond to evolving school needs. Home and real estate, which includes various cleaning products, saw jumps related to audiences staying at home more and needing more cleaning supplies around the house. For health and beauty, these products revealed an increased focus on betterment for people stuck at home.

Even with those increases, insurance brands once again sat atop the list of advertiser impressions. GEICO, Liberty Mutual, Progressive and State Farm were all among the top 10 brands by impressions; joined by other stalwarts like Domino’s, McDonald’s, T-Mobile and Amazon.

Want to learn more about how brands are adjusting advertising in TV’s changed environment? Check out iSpot’s latest report to learn more.

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