Riding the Third Wave: COVID-19’s Impact on Media & Entertainment

Riding the Third Wave: COVID-19's Impact
Cheyne Gateley/VIP

The U.S. is in the midst of the third wave of COVID-19 infections to hit in 2020. The media and entertainment industries have been transformed this year due to social distancing measures, with Variety Intelligence Platform (VIP) assessing the initial effects in an “Industry Impact Report” in July.

This new follow-up features exclusive findings from VIP’s partnership with the strategy team at marketing agency Trailer Park Group, taken from the VIP & Trailer Park Group “COVID-19 Impact Study” that was fielded in October. Key findings are included below, with the study’s results adding robust consumer data to the special report.

VIP has now updated the ongoing impact of coronavirus on the industry in the new special report “Riding the Third Wave.” The report measures how key sectors of entertainment ⁠— across film, TV, advertising, sports, tech and video games ⁠— have performed in the first 10 months of 2020 and lays out what’s next for each sector.

One of the key findings from Trailer Park Group’s work was that the pandemic has prompted increases throughout a wide range of media activities in the U.S., from reading printed books to streaming music and video. The results suggest media revenues from consumption will be up across all in-home activities, while the money consumers would have spent on out-of-home entertainment has been diverted elsewhere.

When looking at that growth solely among consumers of each media format, the VIP/Trailer Park Group study found that while streaming video content remained the medium seeing the greatest increase, this was quickly followed by use of video streaming for both work and social life. Viewing of TikTok videos also saw substantial increases, as did consuming the news on TV.

“Riding the Third Wave” examines these behaviors and drills down to the most critical need-to-know elements behind them. As was the case with the original “Industry Impact Report,” our “Riding the Third Wave” has been designed to provide as much information across media and entertainment without exhausting the reader. Each industry sector has been distilled into three or fewer key charts, with VIP’s customary analysis highlighting important trends and assessing what’s next.

Read on to learn about:


Which industries have been impacted hardest by the pandemic


Where opportunities for growth have emerged owing to changing media behaviors


How VIP thinks COVID-19 will change media and entertainment