Trying to Reason with Hurricane Season, Media Buying Tips for Florida Advertisers

With Tropical Depression 11 officially forming in the Atlantic, now is an ideal time to think about strengthening your marketing efforts to reach your target audience, many of whom are weather-watchers and at risk for potential storm devastation. Forecasters are predicting that the 2020 hurricane season will be one of the worst on record. In fact, Colorado State University (CSU) forecasts 24 named storms to impact 100 named storm days.

According to CSU, this season is expected to exceed the 1981-2010 average by approximately 50%.

It goes without saying that COVID-19 has certainly affected businesses and their customers in an unprecedented way. However, we remain vulnerable to the consequences of hurricanes and violent weather, particularly in Florida. Advertisers should maximize this opportunity by advertising in weather and news broadcasts on local TV stations, national TV and cable networks, radio stations, websites, apps, and digital outdoor billboards.

If you are one of the following businesses listed below, you definitely should consider being top-of-mind with your target audience. It will pay off in the long run.

  • Media
  • Emergency Supplies
    • Communication Devices/Services (cellular companies, track or pre-paid phones, cell phones, weather radios, etc.)
    • Essential Non-Perishable Food
    • Hygiene and Sanitation Products (especially during COVID-19)
    • Protective Gear
    • PPE
      • Clothes
      • Blankets
      • Footwear
  • Governmental Agencies (Hurricane Response) & Non-Profits
  • Healthcare Providers
  • Home Service Businesses
  • Insurance Companies
  • Law Firms/Legal Counsel

For homeowners in the southeastern United States, it’s likely a question of when, not if, a hurricane will impact them. While wind impacts are most commonly associated with large storms, flooding has the potential to be equally as devastating. An inch of water in a home can cause more than $25,000 worth of damage. Flood insurance certainly provides peace of mind, but it’s also important to know that it takes 30 days to go into effect. To that end, flood insurers should advertise now to ensure that they are top of mind when a named storm makes landfall in their area.

As an essential provider of one of the services or products necessary before, during or after a severe weather event, it’s imperative to promote your mission, services or brand to reach your target audience multiple times in order to drive the brand awareness necessary for buyers to include your company in their selection set.

Here are some tips to get ahead of the curve (or cone):

  • Run compelling, helpful messaging via commercials, sponsorships or billboards in weather updates on your local TV or radio stations; cable or satellite providers, OTT or streaming platforms.
  • Place banner ads on targeted websites – ideally running in weather or relative news content that link to informational landing pages.
  • Post on social media, i.e. Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter, Reddit, Pinterest, Snapchat, etc.
  • Write and promote blogs showcasing your expertise.
  • Implement SEM, SEO and retargeting campaign.

Advertising during hurricane season is staying relevant. This may be a challenge to some marketers, but it can be easy with the right interactive agency and partner. Everyone’s target audience is becoming desensitized to marketing messages, but being relevant during a weather crisis allows an advertiser to stand out and be a pillar of strength while showcasing expertise. Bottom line, the current forecast for the 2020 hurricane season is one that we all need to pay attention to. There is much that we can do to help your customers and community all while building your business.