The Pulse: The New Administration, One Month In

The Pulse of the American Consumer is focused on continued insight into consumer sentiments for businesses across all industries.

 

We asked American adults about their sentiments on current events related to COVID-19 and the winter weather, as well as how they are feeling about the Biden/Harris Administration after one month in office. In order for businesses to have the most success connecting with their consumers, they have to understand them – what they are interested in, what they need, and how they feel.

At ENGINE, we have the real-time pulse of the consumer, today, and always. Throughout 2021, we will be offering weekly insights through identifying important data points and trends from the voice of the consumer.

 

KEY FINDINGS AS OF February 21, 2021:

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If you would like more information on ENGINE CARAVAN surveys, contact us below:

At ENGINE, we will be keeping up with the pulse of the consumer throughout 2021, and are regularly running our CARAVAN surveys on current social issues. Contact us at caravaninfo@enginegroup.com for more information or for the full CARAVAN survey findings.

This Online CARAVAN® omnibus surveys were conducted on January 8-10, January 15-17, January 22-24, January 29-31, February 5-7, February 12-14,  and February 19-21, 2021.  Approximately 1,000 adults selected from opt-in panels were surveyed. The results are also weighted to U.S. Census data to be demographically representative.

Written by the CARAVAN team at ENGINE Insights.

The Pulse of the American Consumer

What a Week It Was:

Old Man Winter unleashed his wrath across most of the country, most notably leaving millions of Texans without power and running water. The Biden/Harris Administration already reached the one-month mark, more and more COVID-19 vaccines are being administered, while sadly the United States reaches the 500,000 mark for deaths attributed to the virus.

In need of a small sign that Hope Springs eternal? Let’s look towards Arizona and Florida, where the Boys of Summer are preparing for a new season…

Current Events:

How closely have you followed these news events of the PAST WEEK?

  • The latest updates regarding COVID-19 vaccines
    • Total Followed Closely: 67% (-3% change)
    • Very Closely: 35% (no change)
  • The latest developments concerning COVID-19 infections and deaths in the United States
    • Total Followed Closely: 65% (no change)
    • Very Closely: 31% (+1% change)
  • Reports of Coronavirus ‘variants’ being discovered among patients in the United States
    • Total Followed Closely: 64% (+1% change)
    • Very Closely: 30% (+3% change)
  • The severe winter weather that has impacted large portions of the United States (New)
    • Total Followed Closely: 74%
    • Very Closely: 38%
  • Widescale power outages in Texas due to the severe winter weather (New)
    • Total Followed Closely: 69%
    • Very Closely: 33%

 

How concerned are you currently about these issues?

  • The impact of disinformation and fake news on society
    • Total Concerned: 81% (+3% change)
    • Very Concerned: 47% (-2% change)
  • Contracting the Coronavirus
    • Total Concerned: 70% (+1% change)
    • Very Concerned: 33% (-3% change)
  • Your household’s finances being negatively impacted as a result of the ongoing pandemic
    • Total Concerned: 70% (+4% change)
    • Very Concerned: 35% (+3% change)
  • The amount of time you need to wait to receive the COVID-19 vaccine
    • Total Concerned: 55% (-3% change)
    • Very Concerned: 25% (-1% change)
  • Your general lifestyle being disrupted by new policy decisions made by the Biden/Harris administration
    • Total Concerned: 60% (+9% change)
    • Very Concerned: 31% (+6% change)
  • Your mental wellbeing due to the Coronavirus
    • Total Concerned: 60% (no change)
    • Very Concerned: 26% (no change)
  • The mental wellbeing of your family due to the Coronavirus
    • Total Concerned: 68% (+2% change)
    • Very Concerned: 31% (+2% change)
  • Shortages of the COVID-19 vaccine
    • Total Concerned: 62% (-2% change)
    • Very Concerned: 29% (-4% change)
  • Future threats of violent events in the U.S. caused by domestic terrorists
    • Total Concerned: 80% (+3% change)
    • Very Concerned: 40% (+2% change)
  • The $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief bill that is currently being debated in Congress
    • Total Concerned: 71% (-2% change)
    • Very Concerned: 34% (-1% change)

 

COVID-19 & The Vaccine

  • 30% of American adults have already received or are currently registered on a waiting list to receive the COVID-19 vaccine
  • 25% have not received it yet but will as soon as its available to them
  • 23% will likely get the vaccine eventually but prefer to wait until more evidence of safety and effectiveness is available
  • 23% do not plan to receive it at all

 

Consumer Confidence/Economic Outlook

Though more and more Americans are getting vaccinated for COVID-19, 58% of respondents think we will need to continue avoiding crowds and restricting access to places such as schools and businesses for up to 6 months or longer.

Recent reports indicate it will likely be later in the summer or earlier in the fall before most Americans will have access to the COVID-19 vaccine. Knowing this, whether you actually use them or not, which of these types of places/services would you be willing to go to or use now?

Now, thinking ahead for when the COVID pandemic has been stabilized, whether you actually use them or not, which of these types of places/services do you anticipate going to or using?

  • Stores (for in-store shopping) – 56% Now (-8% change) / 61% Thinking Ahead (-7% change)
  • Outdoor restaurants/ Dining establishments – 41% Now (-4% change) / 46% Thinking Ahead (-7% change)
  • Indoor restaurants/ Dining establishments – 38% Now (-1% change) / 57% Thinking Ahead (-2% change)
  • Staying at a hotel – 35% Now (+1% change) / 45% Thinking Ahead (-2% change)
  • Hair/nail salons/barbershops/tattoo/ massage parlors – 35% Now (-2% change) / 43% Thinking Ahead (-3% change)
  • A large OUTSIDE event, such as a sporting event, concert or festival – 26% Now (+1% change) / 40% Thinking Ahead (-4% change)
  • A large event INSIDE an arena or public building, such as a concert, sporting event, or convention – 18% Now (+12 change) / 33% Thinking Ahead (-4% change)
  • Movie theaters – 25% Now (+1% change) / 42% Thinking Ahead (-3% change)
  • Gyms/fitness centers  – 24% Now (+2% change) / 31% Thinking Ahead (no change)
  • Flying on an airplane – 26% Now (+2% change) / 35% Thinking Ahead (-3% change)
  • Public transportation such as trains or buses – 17% Now (-1% change) / 22% Thinking Ahead (-4% change)
  • Leisure establishments such as bowling alleys and arcades – 18% Now (no change) / 30% Thinking Ahead (-3% change)
  • Bars/Clubs – 17% Now (+no% change) / 26% Thinking Ahead (-2% change)

 

The New Administration, One Month In…

It has already been one month…since the inauguration of the Biden/Harris Administration. At this early stage, we re-measured how optimistic Americans are on these important measures, compared with benchmark readings collected the weekend before the inauguration (January 15 – 17). 

How optimistic are you that the Biden/Harris Administration will have a positive impact on each of these key issues for the United States? (Change numbers are based on those we collected before the inauguration.)

  • The environment
    • Extremely/Very/Somewhat Optimistic: 70% (no change)
    • Extremely/Very Optimistic: 39% (no change)
  • Education
    • Extremely/Very/Somewhat Optimistic: 70% (+3% change)
    • Extremely/Very Optimistic: 39% (-2% change)
  • Healthcare
    • Extremely/Very/Somewhat Optimistic: 70% (+3% change)
    • Extremely/Very Optimistic: 39% (-2% change)
  • Racial Inequality
    • Extremely/Very/Somewhat Optimistic: 70% (+3% change)
    • Extremely/Very Optimistic: 39% (-2% change)
  • Gender Inequality
    • Extremely/Very/Somewhat Optimistic: 70% (+3% change)
    • Extremely/Very Optimistic: 39% (-2% change)
  • Controlling the COVID-19 pandemic
    • Extremely/Very/Somewhat Optimistic: 70% (+3% change)
    • Extremely/Very Optimistic: 39% (-2% change)
  • Foreign relations
    • Extremely/Very/Somewhat Optimistic: 70% (+3% change)
    • Extremely/Very Optimistic: 39% (-2% change)
  • National security
    • Extremely/Very/Somewhat Optimistic: 70% (+3% change)
    • Extremely/Very Optimistic: 39% (-2% change)
  • National employment
    • Extremely/Very/Somewhat Optimistic: 70% (+3% change)
    • Extremely/Very Optimistic: 39% (-2% change)
  • The economy
    • Extremely/Very/Somewhat Optimistic: 70% (+3% change)
    • Extremely/Very Optimistic: 39% (-2% change)
  • Policing/Criminal justice system
    • Extremely/Very/Somewhat Optimistic: 70% (+3% change)
    • Extremely/Very Optimistic: 39% (-2% change)
  • An overall sense of cooperation among United States citizens
    • Extremely/Very/Somewhat Optimistic: 70% (+3% change)
    • Extremely/Very Optimistic: 39% (-2% change)

65% of the country is optimistic (34% extremely/very optimistic) that the Biden/Harris Administration will have a positive impact on the standard of living for their households. (vs. 65%, 34% Pre-inauguration)

How much do you approve or disapprove of the job President Biden is doing?

  • *Among general population American adults:
    • 50% Approve
    • 30% Disapprove
    • 20% Neither approve nor disapprove
    • +20% Net approval rating (approve-disapprove)
  • *Among Registered Voters
    • 52% Approve
    • 32% Disapprove
    • 16% Neither approve nor disapprove
    • +20% Net approval rating (approve-disapprove)

 

Dig deeper with the ENGINE Insights COVID Dashboard

The ENGINE COVID-19 dashboard delivers an easy-to-use, self-serve platform providing access to all of our COVID-19 tracking data including industry specific deep-dives and online behavioral data. This tool puts ENGINE’s data in your hands to uncover meaningful insights to your specific business questions.