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February 25, 2021 - By Barron Rosborough

Hawke Media Special Report: February 25, 2021

The United States reached a milestone this week as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to wreak havoc on the country. 500,000 people have died due to complications from the coronavirus.

For some perspective, in less than a year, this virus has wiped out:

  • More than the population of the city of Atlanta
  • Nearly the entire population of the state of Wyoming
  • Almost as many deaths as WWII, Vietnam, and the Korean War combined

 The loss of life is staggering. 

There is no silver lining to this news. However, the United States is making strides in fighting the coronavirus pandemic.

The United States is vaccinating 1.7 million per day, according to data from last week, which is more than the whole of Canada has deployed since starting their program in December.

Now, more than 12% of the US population has been vaccinated and the road to recovery is becoming more clear.

Consumer Trends


US Unemployment Percentage

Source: FRED

  • In January 2021 US unemployment dropped to 6.3% from 6.7% in December.
  • While jobs recovery has been slow, the decrease in unemployment is a hopeful sign that the economy is ready to make a comeback after nearly a year of living with the pandemic.

Travel Spending

travel spending

Source: NPR

  • In the US, travel spending continues to stagger as it remains down around 39% after a strong recovery through May and July 2020.
  • The travel & leisure space has been ravaged by COVID, however, there is opportunity as consumers seek good deals on safe domestic travel or local getaways.
  • Companies like hotels have begun to target locals to fill the gaps left by the drop in tourism.

Most Popular Mobile Shopping Apps

mobile shopping app usage

Source: Statista

  • Over 80% of US mobile users accessed Amazon’s shopping app, followed distantly by Walmart and eBay.
  • Amazon sellers should optimize their product listings to take advantage of the platform’s mobile features like the AR View shopping experience.

Business Trends

Retail Sales

Retail Sales

  • US retail sales got a 5.3% boost in January 2021, spending rose across all major categories. – Kiplinger
  • Did you notice an increase in January revenue? 

Software Investment

Manufacturer Software Investment

Source: Automation World

  • Software investment by companies in the manufacturing sector is far outpacing hardware spending.
  • The implication here is that the increased focus on software investment means that automation and efficiency are high priorities for manufacturers going forward.

Video Marketing

most popular video platforms for marketers

Source: Biteable

  • Marketers are finding that video is an increasingly important part of their marketing strategy with Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram coming in as the top platforms.
  • Incorporating video can be more engaging than static imagery and on average marketers only spent an average of $300 when producing a video.


soda cans stacked

  • Our partners at Arka have compiled some of the biggest trends in packaging for 2021, including alternative and sustainable packaging which should make big waves this year as consumers continue to be more conscious of the issues brands support.