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Havas Media Group Reveals Swing to Trusted Media Brands and Live TV in Response to Covid-19

Advertising Agency
London, UK
Survey of UK consumers highlights reliance on trusted, traditional media brands and live TV

UK consumers are gravitating towards trusted, traditional media brands and live TV in response to the Covid-19 situation, according to a new study from Havas Media Group.

Havas Media Group’s Covid-19 Media Behaviours Report, a new research study into consumer behaviour and media consumption based on a survey of 1,478 UK respondents, shows that the BBC has become the most trusted news channel during the outbreak, with 64% citing it as a factually correct source of information about Covid-19, followed by Sky News (29%) and The Guardian (15%).

Over half of respondents (53%) said they are using BBC News more than before, almost double that of any other channel.

The study shows that while media consumption has increased in response to Covid-19, with net gains for all channels with the exception of OOH and cinema; live TV, social media, streaming, VOD and newspapers have seen the biggest increases. 49% of respondents said they are watching more live TV because of the virus, 40% said they are visiting social media more, and 39% have increased their use of streaming platforms.

Mirroring the broader national trend, younger people are consuming more media than usual. Perhaps unsurprisingly, there has been a 60% net gain in streaming amongst people aged 18 to 24, and 58% in VOD use. However, more interestingly, this age group has also seen a 49% net gain in live TV viewing.

32% of those surveyed said they are reading newspapers more often, whether physical copies or online. Notably, this is also reflected amongst younger age groups, with 29% of 18 to 24-year-olds and 31% of 25 to 34-year-olds increasing their consumption of newspaper brands.

All social platforms have made gains in usage in the wake of Covid-19, with Facebook and WhatsApp benefitting the most. 33% of respondents said they had been using Facebook more than usual, and 28% said they had increased their use of WhatsApp.

Havas Media Group will be conducting the study on a fortnightly basis, in order to gain insights into consumer behaviour and media consumption as the Covid-19 situation evolves.

Eva Grimmett, chief strategy officer, Havas Media Group, said: “This study really highlights the role that trusted, meaningful media play in times of crisis. While most channels have seen an increase in consumption in response to Covid-19, our research reveals a much greater reliance on live TV and a need for trusted news brands such as the BBC. We’re looking forward to seeing how this behaviour develops as the situation evolves in the coming weeks.”

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