This summer, Vesta continued our ongoing COVID-19 Brand Sentiment Navigator research to determine the impact of the pandemic on individuals and the brands they rely on.

Wave 7 of our study took place during the month of July, when COVID-19 continued to overshadow our lives and dominate the news, from dramatically rising case counts to the reinstatement of restrictions, debates around how to reopen schools safely, and the culture war around masks.

In that alarming climate, it is not surprising that our survey, which was completed by 7,265 consumers from July 17 to August 4, found concern about COVID-19 had bounced back from the months prior, and that the majority of consumers were still not comfortable shopping in person.

This summer has made it clear that the crisis is not over. And as consumers strive to manage through the pandemic, there is an opportunity for brands to fulfill their promise to consumers, helping them through a trying time and building lasting connections in the process. This is clear when studying brand sentiment toward industries and brands. Our study found Grocery Stores, Household and Cleaning Products, Pharmacies, and Health and Wellness brands continued to benefit from high positive consumer sentiment. But negative feelings increased greatly over previous studies for industries that were seen as contributing to the spread of the disease as well as misinformation, such as Bars, Social Media, Airlines/Travel, and Restaurants.

The good news is that brands that take action and communicate with their customers can build awareness and positive sentiment. Respondents were clear – reaching out to consumers and listening to what they need at this time is the single best thing a brand can do.

For more consumer insights, view our full infographic below or visit our research hub for access to all of our studies by following this link.