Thursday, September 18, 2014

US internet users weigh in on how they make purchases digitally

While digital purchasing can be the preferred payment method by the consumer on goods and services, it is wrong to state that consumers choose to buy all categories in that manner. eMarketer reports the results of a June 2014 study performed by Harris Interactive.

Not surprisingly, US internet users used a digital device of some kind (desktop, laptop, smartphone, or tablet) to purchase clothing 69% of the time. The remaining 31% had never purchased a clothing item online. 

Some of the categories that had internet users prefer a brick-and-mortar experience over a digital one were cosmetics and personal grooming, prescription medications, specialty food and beverages, over-the-counter medications, and general food purchases. Cosmetics and personal grooming was the only one among these groups that saw digital purchases reach past 30% at 35%.

A few categories had close to an even split between consumers who have purchased items online and those who never have. Those include accessories, personal electronics, and household electronics.

As marketers work to reach a target audience, it can be crucial to know how a product or service is purchased by a consumer.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

More magazines launch vs. close in first half of 2014

According to the online database, the first half of 2014 welcomed approximately 93 new magazines in the media landscape. By comparison, 30 magazine titles closed during that time frame.

MediaPost reports that the biggest magazine category that launched was classified as “regional interest.” In addition, of the 93 new titles, approximately 15 of those were business-to-business geared magazines.

Of the publications that closed between January and June of this year, 13 of them were automotive enthusiast niche titles. Two noteworthy magazines ceased publication this year. The first being Jet and it will now just be an annual special print edition. Also, the long-running title Ladies’ Home Journal shut down the monthly print magazine. Instead, it is transitioning to a newsstand-only quarterly publication.

Overall, the total ad pages purchased have seen a 4% decline from 2013. First quarter of 2013 sold about 29,745 pages, and the same time period in 2014 showed 28,567 ad pages.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Electronic devices top lists for back-to-school shopping

With the passing of Labor Day, the swimming pools close down, and the schools start up for another year. Parents and students alike need to shop in order to prepare for a new term. Recent research shows that 2014 is anticipating a 5% increase in overall back-to-school shopping.

According to eMarketer, research conducted by ebiquity on behalf of American Express reports that electronic devices are the most expensive item on the shopping list. Below is a list that shows the average back-to-school spending for the last few years according to US Parent Internet users.

Electronic Devices

Clothing and Accessories

Interesting to note is that clothing and accessories had the most expensive category up until 2014 when electronic devices and textbooks usurped it.

Another report from PunchTab notes that mothers used smartphones to aid in shopping this year. About 48% of mothers surveyed planned to use smartphones to look for coupons or sales. The next reason at 30% is to compare store prices with other vendors. Approximately 37% of those surveyed do not plan to use a smartphone while shopping for supplies.

Friday, August 22, 2014

New study explains consumer opinion for out of home advertising

For advertisers, it can become challenging to keep track of consumer behavior research. Fortunately, the abundance of information is meant to help steer campaigns towards an engaged audience. A recent study performed by Future Foundation titled, Always On: Out of Home Lives 2014, breaks down how the public views out of home (OOH) advertising.

The Outdoor Advertising Association of America reported on key findings from the study. Research was conducted interviewing 6,000 respondents across six large, urban cities world-wide. 

Top highlights include:
·        A reported 59% said that OOH digital advertising would be relevant and interesting if it portrayed information that was localized and beneficial at a certain time of day or location. Examples are concerts, events, or discounts to local stores.
·        Approximately 72% of the 18-34s surveyed have viewed a billboard and taken some kind of action as a direct result.
·        About 35% reportedly selected OOH advertisements as the most memorable. Television was the primary memorable vehicle at 46%.

While this was a world-wide survey and not exactly representative of the whole American media landscape, it can give advertisers tips to re-work outdoor initiatives. 

Monday, August 18, 2014

Blogs evolve to keep readers engaged

Blogs have been around for a while now. The competition has become more intense which makes bloggers work to keep audiences engaged. In a recent eMarketer post, research conducted by Orbit Media Studios shows that almost 75% of bloggers now use at least one image in their posts. Images may include stock photos, diagrams, infographics, and/or charts.

Orbit Media Studios reported that although video and audio components are included in blogs, they are not as common as an image. About 15% of bloggers use video and less than 3% use audio.

When it comes to the promotion of blogs, nearly all US bloggers use social media. In fact, it’s estimated that about 94% of bloggers use social media. Other means of promotion include search engine optimization, email marketing, influencer outreach, paid services, etc. However, there is a small portion, less than 5%, who pay to promote posts.

Graphics go closely in line with the social aspect of blogging. Information recently released by TrackMaven reveals that between May 2013 and May 2014, 88% of brand post shares on Facebook worldwide that contained an image had an average post interaction of 2.35. This can be compared to the 12% without photos had an average post interaction of only 1.71. 

Friday, August 8, 2014

Consumers have higher time spent on mobile apps vs. mobile browsers

Over the last year, researchers have chronicled consumers’ mobile use. Smartphone and tablet owners are continuing to use downloaded apps more often than browsers and those numbers are predicted to increase. For advertisers, this means that shifting focus to advertising within the apps is important in order to keep up with the digital world.

eMarketer reports on research conducted by Nielsen in fourth quarter 2013.  Smartphone users in the United States are spending 65% more time on mobile apps than they were two years ago.  However, the amount of apps the smartphone owners had only increased from 23 to 27 in the last two years.  This indicates that users are increasing their time spent on mobile apps that they had already downloaded vs. accruing more.

Other research by comScore Media Metrix Multi-Platform proved that smartphone apps had the majority of time used with leading US digital media properties because of efficiency and mobile optimization. Media properties such as, Apple and Facebook, were mainly accessed through apps with 99% and 94%.  However, media properties such as Wikimedia Foundation sites and Glam Media were predominately accessed through their browsers with 88% and 84%.

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Television is still prime media choice for US' youth

With all of the hype surrounding new technology and how the younger generations adapt earlier, it can lead to the question, what happens to the older technology? The simple answer is it is still there. eMarketer recently reported on a few studies that researched how younger audiences still consume television in spite of other newer digital options.

While the exact amounts of television consumption across younger age ranges differ amongst the research studies, each come to relatively the same conclusion. That is, television is still the primary media consumed by children. One study by Nielsen found that kids, between the ages of 2 and 11, watched approximately 111 hours and 10 minutes per month of “traditional” TV. These kids also spent another 10 hours and 45 minutes watching timeshifted television. In regards to content viewed on a DVD or Blu-ray player, children watched about 9 hours and 18 minutes per month. Another report by Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop put 8 to 10 year-olds as watching 1 hour and 24 minutes of TV per day. This information was according to the children’s parents.

With the introduction of streaming sites like Netflix, Hulu, YouTube, or Amazon, kids have more access to on-demand programming. While the adult counterparts have been accused of “binge viewing” TV and movie content, the term “déjà view” has become a moniker for younger audiences. This term describes the habits of repeatedly watching the same episode or movie many times. If you have kids, how many times have you seen Frozen?

Younger American audiences are watching TV. While researchers may argue the exact amounts, the fact remains that television consumption is still high with the younger audiences.