We’re on the edge of September and looking forward to a positive end to a difficult year. Halloween is starting to trend, especially with unique ideas for how to celebrate during the pandemic, and we’re sharing how you can help your readers prepare.
Also this week, we’re looking at Google’s “heavy ads” blocker release and how AdThrive publishers are protected against resource-heavy ads. And don’t miss the next installment of our Creativity & Data series where we go deep into the world of keyword research!
AdThrive COVID-19 coverage
Click here to browse all of our posts about the effects of the Coronavirus pandemic on the digital media industry.
Ad revenue is picking up
As we wrote about a few weeks ago, August ad revenue tends to pick up the pace from July, and this year has been no different. Comparing August 2020 to August 2019, we saw similar patterns through the month in terms of how ad spend increased on a day-by-day basis.
While this year still has weaknesses driven by economic and pandemic issues, the trends continue to be encouraging and we’re optimistic for the rest of the year — assuming no big changes in the economy.
Google’s “heavy ads” blocker + AdThrive publishers
In May, the Google Chrome team announced an upcoming feature that would block “heavy ads”. They analyzed a tremendous amount of data and found that about .3% of all internet ads consumed over 20% of users’ CPU and network resources for all ads! Making the web a better experience for all users is a huge priority for the Chrome team, so this feature fits in well with that framework.
While there’s still no official confirmation from the Chrome team, some publishers are reporting that the new feature is rolling out now. We haven’t seen any occurrences of this happening yet, but we’re closely monitoring the situation.
Fortunately, AdThrive publishers are already equipped with protection against resource-heavy ads, as we already block all heavy ads via our partnership with Confiant. Chrome’s heavy ad blocker restricts ads that use above 4MB of network requests — we block ads at 1.6MB. Our aggressive position ensures that readers of AdThrive sites get the best experience and our publishers get the highest revenue.
Trending topic: Halloween 2020
Halloween is just around the corner and people are starting their countdowns! If the prior holidays this year have been any indication, people may throw themselves into the celebrations more than ever — even if it’s from the safety of their own homes.
In fact, Halloween candy has been arriving on shelves earlier than ever!
Key timing considerations
1. Search activity for Halloween content typically kicks off the first week in September, but we’re already seeing greater search interest in Halloween ideas and decorations (like Halloween trees) in the past 30 days compared to this time last year. Understandably, this year is showing slightly less search interest for Halloween parties.
Make sure you’re sharing your ideas early this year to capture the traffic from those eager early birds as well as celebration enthusiasts once October hits.
2. Halloween 2020 falls on a Saturday, meaning parents don’t have to worry about getting their kids in bed for school the next day.
Will in-person trick or treating still be a thing? Or will alternative events take over?
A few stats from one study show that parents are still looking to make this year special for their kids despite the uncertainty:
For some, trick-or-treating is canceled or up-in-the-air and these parents are looking to find creative ways to celebrate the holiday. Trick-or-treating alternatives may be more popular this year.
22% of parents said they are planning to attend a trunk-or-treat — a gathering where families or neighbors decorate the trunk of their car and hand out candy to the kids. Another new trend is “reverse trick-or-treating”, where kids stand outside their homes in their costumes and neighbors drive by and toss candy to them.
Halloween candy scavenger hunts, bike parades, and drive-thru Halloween experiences (like drive-thru haunted houses or trick-or-treating) may also be fun alternatives for parents and kids if their normal neighborhood traditions get canceled.
Virtual celebrations could be on the rise as well with virtual costume parades and parties or virtual haunted houses. Share ideas, games, and spooky virtual backgrounds for people to host a festive online celebration. A virtual horror movie marathon could be another new idea to fit this year’s tone!
Halloween search trends
Searches for costume ideas are still high this year compared to the same time last year. 48% of parents plan to buy or make a Halloween costume for their kids this year, and 33% plan to buy a costume for themselves or other adults in their household.
Share ideas for costumes that incorporate a cool background for a Zoom meeting, costume ideas that reflect some of the current events of 2020, or, with 54% of people rewatching favorite shows and movies, how about ideas for classic TV character costumes?
Recent breakout searches in Google Trends suggest that the current cozy, stay-at-home trend may be getting a festive refresh. Some current top Halloween searches prioritizing comfort:
- Halloween crocs
- Halloween pajamas
- Halloween pillows
We’re excited to see how the AdThrive community pivots content for Halloween 2020!
AdThrive’s free Creativity & Data course
How do you work smarter, not harder when it comes to creating content? How do you marry creative inspiration with data collection and analysis?
Our Creativity & Data course gives you step-by-step video walkthroughs and workbooks to download and complete on topics like:
- How to think creatively and use data to spark new content ideas
- Ways to use Google Trends to find hot new content opportunities and sniff out trends that are on their way out
- New ways to use keyword research tools to audit your content and find your “golden opportunities” for search traffic
…And so much more!
Check out the lessons we’ve released so far:
And join us Monday, August 31 to take your keyword strategy to the next level in our third installment of the Creativity and Data series: Keyword Research!