Daily newspapers are on the ropes, digital advertising and audiences grow, and TV news gain revenue mostly.
That’s the long and short of the most current Pew State of the News Media report, and here are five key takeaways and 6 strategies to capitalize on these turbulent trends:
- 2015 was perhaps the worst year for newspapers since the Great Recession and its immediate aftermath. Daily circulation fell by 7%, the most in 5 years, and ad revenue at publicly traded newspaper companies fell by 8%, the most since 2009. Similarly, newsroom staffing dropped by 10% in 2014, the last year data was available. With the newspaper consolidation wave, the faster decline means newspapers may be past the point of no return.
- Digital ad spending increased 20% in 2015, and mobile advertising surpasses desktop, and journalism organizations have not been the primary beneficiaries.There was explosive growth in mobile advertising, which increased by 65%, reaching $32 billion – higher than desktop advertising for the first year ever. Almost 66% of this $60 billion in digital advertising spending (65%) went to just five technology companies: Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Microsoft and Twitter.
- Local TV news revenue remains steady at $18.6 billion – at least for now. Revenue was down from 2014, but since the industry gets a big election year boost, a better comparison is 2013, which saw similar ad revenue levels. While local TV has been the most common source of news, Millennials’ top political news source is Facebook.
- Driven by a highly competitive presidential primary season, cable news saw its viewership jump 8%, to an average of 3.1 million viewers in prime time (see Pew Research Center analysis of Nielsen Media Research data, used under license). This was especially pronounced at CNN; whose prime-time audience grew 38%.
- Podcasting continues to experience audience growth– though this includes both those podcasts focused on news and those looking at other subjects. About 20% of U.S. adults 12 or older (21%) listened to some kind of podcast in the past month, up from 12% six years ago, and 36% have ever listened to a podcast, up from 23% in 2010.
So what should marketers do? Be mindful of those evolving trends and act:
- Continue to evaluate a broader mix of media channels for your storytelling.
- Assure that your stor(ies) can be re-purposed across multiple channels.
- Think about podcasts and their value in entertaining, informing, educating and inspiring your customers.
- While audiences change, you might consider newspapers as a more affordable option now.
- Be extra sharp about where your primary target market is among these changes.Think buyer personas and customer journey map.
- Acknowledge the media changes in this election year and anticipate changes in 2017.
How are your marketing strategies affected and how are you flexing to take advantage of these media trends?
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