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Toiletries (190X), Social organisations (66X), ice cream (11X) were the highest contributors.
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Advertising FCT grew by 9% in week 13 of COVID-19 disruption on the back of social advertisements: BARC-Neilsen

Toiletries (190X), Social organisations (66X), ice cream (11X) were the highest contributors.
  • Some of the top brands in week 13 (starting from March 28) are Dettol, Lifebuoy soap, Harpic, Lizol, Hotstar VIP.
  • Social advertising from the Government and NGOs on television grew by 244% and 628% respectively.
  • Apart from that, non-essentials such as cement, paints, fairness creams, hair removers, and digestives continue to advertise on television.
  • Toiletries (190X), Social organisations (66X), ice cream (11X) were the highest contributors.
In the 13th week of COVID-19 disruption starting from March 28, a report by BARC India and Nielsen called 'Crisis Consumption on TV and Smartphones' revealed that advertising Free Commercial Times (FCT) increased by 9%. Sports, social advertisements, toiletries, ice cream were the highest contributors.



Social advertising from the Government and NGOs on television grew by 244% and 628% respectively.

Some of the top brands that contributed to FCT in week 13 were Dettol, Lifebuoy soap, Harpic, Lizol, Hotstar VIP. Apart from that, non-essentials such as cement, paints, fairness creams, hair removers, and digestives also continued to advertise on television.




The same trend of social messaging followed on digital platforms. Creatives specifically designed referencing COVID-19 are seeing a rise across multiple sectors. Top brands like Amul, Godrej, Audi, Zomato, Lifebuoy played their part to reinforce and support social distancing. They changed their logos and spread awareness around the precautions that need to be taken to stay away from Coronavirus.



BARC’s data also revealed that the return of classics on Doordarshan made it the most watched channel across India.



PM Narendra Modi’s video message on #9PM9Min, released on April 3, was the biggest news event ever as it garnered 1 million viewing minutes.



During the nine minutes blackout period, TV viewership recorded was the lowest since 2015 as it dropped by 60%. The decline started by 08:53 PM and came back to current trends only after 9:30 pm.


Some of the Key Highlights of TV and Smartphone consumption during the third week of Lockdown are as follows:

BARCNielsen Smartphone Panel
CoverageAll India (Urban + Rural)All India (Urban 1 Lakh plus)
TGALL NCCS 2+ yearsNCCS ABC 15-44 yearsAndroid Smartphone Users
Time PeriodPRE COVID - 11th Jan 2020- 31st Jan 2020PRE COVID - 13th Jan 2020 - 2nd Feb 2020
COVID DISRUPTION Week 2 - 21st March 2020 to 27th March 2020Week 3 – 28thMarch 2020 to 3rd April 2020COVID DISRUPTION Week 2 - 21st March 2020 to 27th March 2020Week 3 - 28thMarch 2020 to 3rd April 2020

  1. India divided on various emotions of feeling Happy, Anxious, Frustrated, Scared and Peaceful – missing out on me-time indulgences and office time
  2. The Prime Minister’s request on #9PM9MINS garnered the lowest ever Total TV viewership for those 9 mins since 2015
  3. India follows the global trend in showing continued increase in TV (43%) and Smartphone consumption(13%) this week vis-à-vis the Pre COVID period
  4. The growth in TV consumption this week driven by the Movies Genre(77% growth). Significant increase in Time spent on watching Movies (52% growth) on the Smartphone
  5. Return of the Classics makes DD National the most watched channel this week across India.
  6. While the return of the Old Classics improves viewership on DD National and Pay GEC Channels, Smartphone viewers increase consumptions on Original Series with 32% growth over the Pre COVID period
  7. Non-Primetime continues to be the growth driver for TV (81% over the Pre COVID period) with early morning and late night slots also showing a growth
  8. Social Connectivity stabilizing as people get used to the new normal while the surge in time spent on Digital News consumption stays
  9. Gaming continues to show growth (44% over the Pre COVID period) - categories like Virtual Education and Virtual Drives increased consumption
  10. Free Commercial Time (FCT) on TV advertising grows by 9% on the back of social advertising
  11. On Digital Advertising, no drop in the count of creatives for 11 out of 19 categories – drop seen in Retail, Travel and Auto

COVID-19IndiaCases: 226,770Deaths: 6,348Recovered: 109,462
COVID-19WorldCases: 6.42mnDeaths: 383kRecovered: 2.87mn
COVID-19USACases: 1.82mnDeaths: 106kRecovered: 485k