Coronavirus Updates: Still Necessary?

NuVoodoo has been tracking concern about the coronavirus for nearly three months. We’ve watched extreme concern dip below 40% since the start of the Memorial Day weekend – and hope it will be able to continue to ease back. Looking at data from 7 days ending May 27, we see overall concern across the nation at 38%, driven by concern in the Northeast U.S. – where nearly half remain extremely concerned.

With the level of concern gradually decreasing in much of the country, it would be easy to conclude that interest in on-going updates about the local coronavirus situation is also easing. And, in fact, the demand for at-least-hourly updates backed off across the month of May from 66% at the beginning and down to 61% at the end of the month.

Again, there are regional variations, so it’s important to know your local market situation. Regionally, the demand for at-least-hourly updates ranges from a high of 64% in the Northeast to a low of 56% in the Midwest. The content interest data we’d published last week showed keen interest remaining in local coronavirus hotspots and advice from local medical experts – which in many places can include comparatively good news about reductions in new cases.

In most cases, we think the prescription remains short (maybe as short as 30 seconds), well-curated hourly updates of local coronavirus information (maybe focused on a different part of your metro each time). Knowing your audience will help guide you on whether the updates are more attuned to reporting local cases (especially if they’re growing sharply or steadily decreasing) or local businesses re-opening. But, retaining the franchise of being where to go for local information remains important while listeners deal with restoring their lives – and especially while they navigate these next months of uncertainty.