State of Home Improvement: 10 Updates in Week 8

  • Categories:

    COVID-19 Response

  • Date:

    May 8, 2020

State of Home Improvement: 10 Updates in Week 8

COVID-19 Response

Businesses opening their doors for the first time in nearly two months. Jobless claims trending down. Refinance activity trending up. Mixed messages coming from every direction. A growing divide sparking protests across the map. As the first full week of May draws to a close, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to influence nearly every aspect of our lives and livelihoods.

If you’re responsible for a home improvement brand or other business, it’s a lot to keep up with in the moment, especially when you still have your long-term marketing strategies to consider. Don’t have time to read every report or watch every webinar? We did some of the heavy lifting for you, gleaning updates for the home and building category from multiple sources including eMarketer, Hanley Wood and Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies.

Meanwhile, if you want to go deeper, we’ll help you do that, too: For details on the phased reopening of our economy, the state of the U.S. labor market, generational attitudes and other important issues, download a free copy of our May 8 POV.

As of May 8:

  1. 3.2M workers filed for unemployment during the week ending May 2 — down from 3.8M in the prior week. (Yahoo! Finance)
  2. Mortgage rates hit bottom, driving higher refinance activity and a modest improvement in purchase demand from mid-April. (Hanley Wood)
  3. Buyer demand and healthy housing market dynamics should limit the drop in U.S. home prices to 2–3%. (LBM Journal)
  4. Contractors will likely expect more curbside pickup and jobsite delivery options even after the current crisis ends. (The Farnsworth Group)
  5. Remodeling activity increases are forecast for 17 metro areas despite overall shrinkage. (Joint Center for Housing Studies, Harvard University)
  6. People continue to dive into small home improvement projects they may have put off for months or more, according to new Lowe’s CMO Marisa Thalberg. (Ad Age)
  7. Facebook and Google have been buoyed by direct response advertisers taking advantage of low CPMs — and Twitter is starting to catch up. (eMarketer)
  8. After Amazon cut publisher commissions, publishers are expanding their affiliate partnerships with retailers such as Walmart, Target and Best Buy. (Ad Age)
  9. More U.S. agencies and brand marketers reported postponing campaigns in April versus March. (eMarketer)
  10. Brand interest in direct-to-consumer strategies spiked 170% compared to February. (Media Post)

As a reminder, on a weekly basis, Wray Ward will continue to publish timely information, trends and advice related to the coronavirus.*

If you have questions or want to discuss specific next steps for your brand, please feel free to contact me.

*All statistics as of May 8, 2020.

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