Sporting events were going to be a huge driver of advertising spend growth this year, but thanks to the coronavirus pandemic, we’re seeing widespread cancellations. On March 24, an announcement was made to postpone the 2020 Summer Olympics, which was originally supposed to take place this June. Will the ad dollars meant for the games be redistributed elsewhere, or simply go away?

Last week, eMarketer lowered its projections for global media spend this year by nearly 3%. That revision assumed that the Summer Olympics would still take place as planned in June.

Earlier, it was advised by WARC that the cancellation or postponement of UEFA Euro 2020 soccer tournament and the Olympics and Paralympics would affect traditional media the most (NBCUniversal had sold a record $1.25 billion in national advertising around the Olympics by early March, according to Ad Age.), but “will also impact online publishers and BVOD platforms.”

Another factor that’s currently unknown is if the downgrading of video streaming quality by platforms is going to affect digital video ad spend, which has been a growth factor. The Dentsu Aegis Network (DAN) estimated that digital video would grow by 14.6% this year.

There was a downward revision by DAN regarding estimates for ad spend growth in China from 6.9% to 3.9%. Despite the drop, it’s still up from last year’s growth of 3%, thanks to mobile which is expected to drive growth in the market with a 17.6% increase year over year.

Accord to Dan, this year, e-commerce is expected to account for 42.4% of all digital ad spend in China as consumers are making essential purchase online, rather than doing in in a brick and mortar store.

This e-commerce situation is complicated by supply chain and fulfillment challenges, although many online sellers increased ad spend across channels as social distancing took hold. It’s not clear if e-commerce dollars can make up for broader losses in other sectors.

Source – Ginny Marvin