Lockdown Social Trends

This last year has been filled with many changes as people have had to adapt to life in lockdown. More people have been turning to social media to stay connected, with Facebook and Instagram reach continuing to grow immensely. In this report we have combined the top lockdown social media insights to help you understand how the pandemic has impacted social behaviour. In the changing climate it is more important than ever to stay on top of the latest social trends in order to engage your audience effectively.

Ad Spend

  • Globally jumped 56.4% in Q3 compared to Q2
  • Southeast Asia grew by 28.9%
  • Northern America increased by 61.7% during Q3
  • The rapid increase may be due to the Facebook ad boycott in the previous quarters

Industry ad spend increased by 39%

  • FMCG increased 61.3%
  • Auto increased 59.4%
  • Finance increased 35.3%
  • E-commerce increased 27.5%

Ad Spend

  • 2020 ad spend decreased in the early pandemic months of March and April
  • However, in May it surpassed the previous year and has remained that way through Q3
  • As the ad spend has increased so has the ad costs
  • Worldwide cost per click was 4.8% lower than it has been at the end of Q3 2019

Facebook Q3 Revenue

  • Facebook revenue has grown 22% to $21.47 billion YoY Net income increased 29% to $7.85 billion YoY
  • May be due to the pandemic or more people coming online
  • Percentage of ad spend on main feeds decreased QoQ
  • Facebook News Feed decreased by 2.3%
  • Instagram Feed decreased by 1.2%
  • Spend is being distributed to alternative ad placements
  • 76% of ad spend still goes to main feeds
  • Instagram stories received 10.4% of spend
  • New placements received 13.7% of spend
  • One notable stream is Instagram Explore, which in over a year moved up to the sixth-highest as placement (2.6%) in terms of spend

Cost Per Click on Facebook and Instagram

  • Increased 32% QoQ
  • In Q3 2020 the CPC for all brand ad accounts increased by 32.1% to $0.140
  • Click-through rate for all brand ad accounts has remained stable. Although it decreased slightly during Q3 to 0.98% which was 2% lower than it has been at the end of Q2 (1.00%) and 5.8% lower than at the end of Q3 2019 (1.04%).

Instagram feed costs decrease by 20% YoY

  • Facebook News Feed decreased by 11.6% in CPC
  • Instagram Feed decreased by 20.1% in CPC
  • Facebook In-stream Video increased by 9.4% in CPC

Highest converting Ad placement types

  • Facebook News Feed has the highest click-through rate at 1.82%
  • Facebook Video Feeds and Instagram Video were at 0.85% and 0.65%
  • Instagram Feed was 0.33% and Instagram Stories at 0.24%

Facebook Ads Reach Grew 15% YoY

  • Northern America grew 134.9% YoY
  • Latin America reach grew 49.7% YoY
  • Western Europe reach grew 31.3% YoY
  • Central America reach grew reach grew 31.2% YoY
  • Southeast Asia reach grew 3.4% YoY

Facebook Monthly Active Users

  • Daily user base grew to 1.8 billion up 12% YoY
  • Monthly user base grew to 2.74 billion up 12% YoY

Organic Engagement

  • Need to understand the audience and who you are targeting
  • Instagram audience size is 35% larger than Facebook
  • In Q3 2020 the total audience size of the 50 biggest brand profiles was 34.7% bigger on Instagram than Facebook
  • Engagement remained significantly stronger on Instagram which has 22% moreinteractions than Facebook

Facebook fans time online shifts to morning

  • Audience are spending more time online in the morning
  • The amount of fans online at 5am Friday increased by 98% in September compared to March and similar increases were seen on every weekday

Interactions mostly steady in Q3

  • For the 50 biggest Instagram brand profiles interactions remained steady over the last 15 months, never going below 80% of the max amount
  • Facebook experiences a spike in interactions during the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Facebook Live delivers double the interactions of video

  • In Q3 2020 Facebook Live was the most engaging format on the platform with 33 media post interactions
  • On Instagram, carousel was the most engaging format with 188 media post interactions
  • Facebook Live usage by brand accounts decreased in Q3 2020. It reached a high of 0.95% in May and since then the proportion of live video slowly decreased to 0.74% as brand activities returned to normal.

Longer videos perform better on Facebook

  • Long and very long videos on Facebook achieved the best overall performance and the greatest reach in 2020
  • The reach was best for very long videos over 5 minutes which received a reach 70.4% higher than the second best video length

Video length correlates to interactions and reach

  • In the last 9 months the median reach for very long videos (more than 5 minutes) was nearly 9,500 which was 35% more than long videos. Distribution of Interactions Across Industries
  • Ecommerce received the highest percentage of interactions on Facebook and the second highest number of interactions on Instagram behind only Fashion
  • The top 3 positions remained unchanged from Q2 2020.

Influencer #Ad usage steady ahead of holidays

  • In Q3 2020 the number of influencers who used #ad in their posts increased by 10.6% compared to Q3 2019
  • This year’s increase doesn’t compare to September 2019 when there was a 70% jump that led into a strong holiday season.


  • Advertisers aren’t afraid to spend and will try to make up for 2020 losses during the holiday season
  • Facebook and Instagram reach has grown immensely meaning larger audiences and more time spent on platforms
  • Social Media marketing is extremely resilient to market changes
  • The upcoming holiday season could be a key time for influencer campaigns