“At Expedia, for instance, we spend $5 billion a year on advertising. We won’t spend $1 billion on advertising probably this year,” Diller said. “You just rip that across everything.” Expedia Group chairman and senior executive Barry Diller told CNBC. He noted that advertising spend across the board would be hit in the second quarter. 

Expedia Group and its peers, like Booking Holdings, spend heavily on Google, since so many travellers search for trips with terms like “flight to London” or “hotel in San Francisco.” On the company’s February fourth-quarter earnings call, Diller mentioned Expedia is one of Google’s biggest advertisers and that Expedia is trying to move away from its “reliance on Google and Metasearch” to grow more direct relationships with its customers.

In a survey last month, the Interactive Advertising Bureau surveyed nearly 400 media planners, buyers and brands responsible for U.S. ad spend, and found that 74% of them believe the coronavirus will have a greater impact on ad spend in the country than the 2008-09 financial crisis. Nearly a quarter of respondents said they have paused all ad spend for the rest of the first and second financial quarters.

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