1.1 Background of the study
A newly emerging coronavirus, SARS‐CoV‐2 (previously known as 2019‐nCoV) which can cause coronavirus disease (COVID‐19), a severe respiratory illness like SARS and MERS, was first reported in Wuhan, China at the end of 2019. The World Health Organization (WHO) initially declared the COVID‐19 outbreak a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC) and then characterized it as a pandemic. In response to the pandemic, rigorous policies to restrict public movement and large gatherings have been implemented in China, such as extending the Lunar New Year holiday, postponing the spring semester for universities, primary and middle schools and kindergartens (“China Extends Spring Festival Holiday”, 2020). Due to the strict physical distancing measures, people are heavily reliant on media, especially social media (e.g. Weibo and WeChat), to learn the latest news about the pandemic and to maintain connectivity (Limaye et al., 2020).
The ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has had an impact on every aspect of our lives, from the way people spend their time, search, find, and buy products, to the way businesses, brands, and marketers advertise and promote their products, or services.When people began spending more time at home, as a result of the pandemic, they also began using the internet more, which gave rise to an unexpected increase in social media engagement.
According to reports, 46 to 51 percent of American adults started using social media more since the outbreak began, and the average amount of time spent on mobile internet has risen by an hour more every day during the crisis.
As of today, it is reported that there are an estimated 3.23 billion, which is about 80 percent of the overall global number of internet users, who are using social media at least once every month in 2020. Facebook currently remains the leading social media platform used by users, followed by the likes of Instagram and TikTok.Because more people are spending more time on social media networks and mobile devices during the pandemic, they are also engaging more with online ads. One report indicates that the number of mobile internet users engaging with online ads has increased by 15 percent during the crisis.
According to another report, the numbers of social media impressions have increased year-on-year by 20 percent, which means that more social media users are seeing more ads. The report also adds that this is also a result of the rise of Story and video format ads.In addition to the increase in social media usage, and ad engagement, the number of internet and mobile users turning to social media influencers and their content has also increased as a result of the pandemic.
Due to the physical restrictions, social media users are naturally inclined to seek interpersonal connections. One of the beneficiaries of this need is influencer content. One survey conducted by the Global Web Index discovered that more than 80 percent of consumers in the US and the UK say that they’ve consumed more content during COVID-19.there are now more people buying and shopping online, as a result of the pandemic, and social distancing rules. The current crisis has forced many to shop online from the safety and convenience of their own homes, and avoid waiting in lines, and crowded areas.
This, in turn, has caused an expansion of e-commerce with new customers and different types of products. According to a report, online sales grew by 15.1 percent, and on Cyber Monday 2020 alone, consumers spent a record of $10.8 billion, which broke previous online shopping records.
1.2 Statement of research problem
Since more people are spending more time on social media networks during the pandemic,social media have become the perfect go-to places where you can advertise and promote your ideas, but with this comes with the problem of if the content provided by brand influencers is of high quality, brand influencers collecting money and not do what they have been paid to do, advertising influencers not having good customer relations skill, not keeping to signed contract and or agreement. These and more are what will be examined in this study
1.3 Objectives of the study
The primary objective of this study is to:
l To assess the impact of covid-19 on social media advertisement.
l To find out if there have been increase in advertisement on social media during covid-19.
l To recommend ways advertisement on social media can come with high quality and also be regulated.
1.4 Research Hypothesis
The following questions have been prepared for this research which are:
a)H0: Covid-19 had no impact on social media advertisement
Hi: Covid-19 had impact on social media advertisement
b)H0: there was no increase in advertisement on social media during covid-19
Hi:there was increase in advertisement on social media during covid-19
1.5 Significance of the study
l This study will assess the impact of covid-19 on social media advertisement
l The findings of this research work will undoubtedly provide the much needed information to government organizations, ministry communication,brand influencers , individuals,and academia
1.6 Scope of the study
This study intends to assess the impact of covid-19 on social media advertisement. Hence this study is delimited social media brand influencers and their clients in Lagos state and as such, will be used as our case study
1.7 Limitations of the study
This study was constrained by a number of factors which are as follows:
Financial constraint is inevitable considering the present economic situations. Due to lack of finance at the researchers disposal to get materials and in printing of questionnaires. it was not possible to visit some of the brand influencers and their clients.
In developing countries like Nigeria, there is the problem of insufficient data.
Time factor: time factor pose another constraint since having to shuttle between writing of the research and also engaging in other academic work making it uneasy for the researcher
1.8 Operational definition of terms
Assess: evaluate or estimate the nature, ability, or quality of.
Impact: this is the action of one object coming forcibly into contact with another
Covid-19: this is a disease caused by a new strain of coronavirus. 'CO' stands for corona, 'VI' for virus, and 'D' for disease. Formerly, this disease was referred to as '2019 novel corona virus' or '2019-nCoV.'
Social media: websites and applications that enable users to create and share content or to participate in social networking
China Extends Spring Festival Holiday (2020). China extends Spring Festival holiday to contain coronavirus outbreak. The State Council of the People’s Republic of China. Retrieved from: http://english.www.gov.cn/policies/latestreleases/202001/27/content_WS5e2e34e4c6d019625c603f9b.html
Limaye, R.J. , Sauer, M. , Ali, J. , Bernstein, J. , Wahl, B. , Barnhill, A. , & Labrique, A. (2020). Building trust while influencing online COVID‐19 content in the social media world. The Lancet Digital Health, 2(6), e277–e278. [PMC free article] [PubMed] [Google Scholar]
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