Boston COVID-19

Consumer Research Study

Executive Summary

Between July 6 and July 16, 2020, Strategic Solutions Research conducted a study of 1532 Boston area consumers to determine how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected their purchase plans over the next 60 days.

Below is a brief overview of the study findings.

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Summary of Key Findings

Nearly six out of 10 listeners are optimistic to some degree, although most of those are also “concerned.” Only 15% are concerned and very worried.

Four out of 10 listeners feel their spending habits are back to normal or will be so within the next few months. Interestingly, the great majority of listeners feel the economy will return to normal in six months or more…slower than they think their own spending habits will return to normal.


Part of this optimism could be fueled by the job status of these listeners. 73% are full-time workers, 7% part time and 13% are unemployed, which indexes lower than the Boston area overall (16% according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)

Two-thirds of Beasley listeners currently commute to a job site. One-third of listeners now work from home, and the great majority of them had been commuting. (That is why the expressway is less crowded!)


Among people working from home currently, the great majority of them expect to do so at least some days during the week permanently. More specifically, 8% feel they will work from home all the time moving forward and 22% at least sometimes.

COVID-19 is not marking an end to brick-and-mortar shopping: An overwhelming majority of Beasley Boston listeners – including those under 35 years old – plan to use a combination of online and brick-and-mortar shopping as distancing restrictions continue to be lifted.


Bargain prices are NOT going to drive foot traffic. Consumers want to know the businesses they are visiting are making every effort to keep them safe.

They also like to know that the business cares about its employees, and the community. The one exception is the auto category – discounts and incentives ARE big drivers of purchase decisions.


Host endorsements are a factor in purchasing decisions for one out of 4 Beasley Boston listeners.

Beasley Boston listeners are active! More than eight out of 10 say they are “likely” to do outdoor activities like hiking, camping, cycling, running and swimming.


The majority of listeners plan local vacations and staycations, visiting local sites in the state.

Home projects are a hot category. Six out of 10 listeners plan to do some kind of home repair or renovation, including landscaping, painting, plumbing and carpentry.


Nearly one out of 5 plan to purchase furniture, bedsand mattresses.


A huge number of listeners – seven out of 10 – are looking forward to eating in a restaurant. Restaurants greatly increase potential foot traffic by offering outdoor seating and delivery.

Gyms and Fitness Centers are at a key moment. As they open back up, there are large numbers of lapsed members who will consider re-joining, but there is also a large number who do not plan to re-start their membership. Marketing will be a critical action to stem the attrition levels.


23% of women currently participate in online fitness classes. Considering that eight out of 10 listeners participate in outdoor fitness activities, this seems to be an area of potential growth.

Traditional big banks lead in usage over local banks and credit unions, but they have significantly lower levels of Brand Ambassadors than local banks and credit unions. No-fee ATM use is by far the biggest driver for bank customers, including those inclined to switch.


Listeners in Boston will listen to the health experts or the data to know when things are “safe” to stop quarantining. Very few will believe it is safe just because the government or the media says so.


Nearly nine out of 10 listeners support wearing a mask “to keep yourself and / or others safe” and only 13% say they “don’t care if other people wear a mask.”

Planned Purchases
Do you plan on purchasing any of the following in the next 60 days? Please select ANY of the following that you think you are LIKELY to purchase/shop for. Select ALL that apply.

Greater Boston Area Consumer in a Post COVID-19 World
Thank You!

Marketing Inquiries:


Tina Murley

VP of Sales

[email protected]

(617) 822-6270

Media Inquiries:


Heidi Raphael

VP of Corporate Communications

[email protected]

(239) 659-7332



Hal Rood

Executive Vice President & Partner

[email protected]

(206) 347-2188

Methodology – Strategic Solutions Research, a market research company that provides trustworthy research to leading media brands around the world, conducted interviews with 1,532 listeners from Beasley Media Boston radio station databases. All surveys were conducted between 7/6/20 – 7/16/20. Sample Profile: