Unruly / About us / News / COVID-19 is Reshaping Consumer Content Consumption, Spending Habits and Advertising Preferences in Japan

COVID-19 is Reshaping Consumer Content Consumption, Spending Habits and Advertising Preferences in Japan

Only 2% of Consumers in Japan Think Brands Should Pause All Advertising, While More Than A Quarter Want Ads to Make Them Feel Uplifted and Informed 

TOKYO — April 24, 2020 — Keep on advertising — that was the resounding message from Japanese consumers to brands trying to adapt to the coronavirus pandemic, with only 2% saying brands should pause their advertising.


But what sort of advertising do consumers want to see? With a lot of ad campaigns being put on hold or cancelled following the COVID-19 outbreak, a new study by video ad tech company Unruly of over 3,000 consumers globally, has revealed almost a third of Japanese consumers want brands to provide a sense of continuity and normality. 


However, if we look at different age groups, younger consumers in particular want brands to be more informative in their ad campaigns (18-24s 43%; 25-34s 34%), while older consumers prefer ads that will make them feel happy during these challenging times (45-54s 29%; 55+ 32%).


This study was conducted at the end of March, before the Japanese government’s state of emergency was announced. However, the COVID-19 outbreak had already had an impact on consumers’ daily routines in Japan, with 32% practicing social distancing and 7% self-isolating. 


The survey also revealed that overall time spent online has increased considerably in Japan — with consumers spending a lot more time than before on their mobile phones (27%), desktop (15% ) and game consoles (14%).


Away from their digital devices, almost 20% of Japanese consumers are spending more time cooking and reading books, while there’s also been an increase in the amount of time people are spending on home improvements (11%).


Other key findings include:


  • People in Japan are tuning in for updates during the coronavirus pandemic, with Japanese consumers more likely to watch the news (48%) than drama (44%) or comedy shows (37%);
  • Around 20% are spending more time watching online videos or video streaming than they used to;
  • Other than food or essential items, home entertainment has seen the largest increase in expenditure (13%) since the pandemic; 
  • Almost half (49%) of 18-24s have increased the amount of time they spend watching online videos, while 37% are spending more time on social media and watching live TV;
  • 29% of 18-24s would prefer brands to communicate to them using online video; 
  • 20% of Japanese consumers are spending more money on in store groceries than online (10%).


To view the study in Japanese, click here.


About Tremor International

Tremor International Ltd is a global leader in advertising technologies, it has 3 core divisions: Tremor Video, RhythmOne, and Unruly.

Tremor Video helps advertisers deliver impactful brand stories across all screens through the power of innovative video technology combined with advanced audience data and captivating creative. Tremor Video is one of the largest and most innovative video advertising companies in North America, with offerings in CTV, instream, and in-app.

RhythmOne drives real business outcomes in multiscreen advertising. Its highly ranked programmatic platform efficiently and effectively delivers performance, quality, and actionable data to demand and supply-focused clients and partners.

Unruly is a data-driven marketplace with more than 2,000 direct integrations with publishers, unique demand relationships with the world’s biggest advertisers and privileged access to News Corp inventory. Unruly works with 95% of the AdAge 100 and 82% of video views are delivered across ComScore 1,000 sites.

Tremor International Ltd is headquartered in Israel and maintains offices throughout the US and Canada, Asia-Pacific, Europe, India and Latin America, and is traded on the London Stock Exchange (AIM: TRMR).


Media enquiries

For further information, please contact:

David Waterhouse

Email: david.waterhouse@unrulygroup.com