The Year of Content: What the Deloitte Media Consumer Survey means for 2019
“It’s the year of content. And the pickings are plentiful for consumers who increasingly expect an ‘all access’ pass to media and entertainment.” – Media Consumer Survey 2018, Deloitte
It’s no surprise we’re living at a time when content is king. Cultivating support for this rapid growth is essential as immediacy of tailored content becomes the norm; people want it fast, and people want it now.
In the recent Media Consumer Survey 2018 by Deloitte, they highlight the fact we’re entering the Year of Content – but not because it’s time to start content production, it’s time to start organising it. Whether for the consumption of news, media or entertainment, consumers want it delivered in an easy-to-navigate package in the same location, every time.
As we move towards 2019, this survey showcases the key trends to expect in the year to come. In this blog we outline the fundamental tools to fuel your 2019 content strategy.
“…75% of respondents indicate they’d like the ability to search and discover all of their content in one place. We’re also relying more on algorithms for discovery, but not all of us necessarily trust the results.”
Perhaps not surprising but it is eye-opening to see the consumption of content change so rapidly. While we see more services appear to provide consumers with the ultimate variety of music, TV and movies, we’ll start to see similar trends trickle into the distribution of written content.
This shift in consumption is shown through the increase of people using social media as their sole source of news, up from 14% to 17% and newspaper subscriptions increasing from 16% to 17%. The latter is part of a growing trend of subscription loyalty which we will cover in greater detail later.
While a driving factor for entertainment services such as Spotify and Netflix are their ad-free subscriptions, when it comes to news, 64% of respondents agreed nothing would entice them to pay for it, ad-free or not. News instead requires “quality, integrity, and responsibility” to achieve the same level of trust, loyalty and usership other services receive (though 22% of respondents say they’d pay to avoid ads on news content).
Social media usage
“Daily usage of social media platforms continues to decrease, down to 55% from 59% last year and nearly back on par with 2014 levels (54%). The proportion of respondents who are ‘heavy users’ of social media, i.e. update or check their profile at least ten times a day, has also decreased to 9% (12% last year) …”
While 85% of respondents remain frequent users of social media, daily use is declining (a 6% drop from 2016). This is accompanied by growing trends in how consumers use social media. 60% of respondents use social media to connect with friends and family, 53% for messaging friends and 46% just looking at photos.
This is a growing trend in the consumption of social media; users are seeking valuable experiences, preferring to interact with friends rather than brands.
What social media platforms are people using? 77% on Facebook, 44% on YouTube, 24% on Instagram, 14% on Snapchat and 11% on Twitter.
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“Subscription loyalty is as important, if not more important, than new subscriber acquisitions. Fifty-nine percent of newspaper subscribers and 49% of magazine subscribers have held their subscriptions for three years or more…”
While subscription services such as Netflix or pay TV have a broader audience, that doesn’t ensure users are engaged. And whilst print media cannot guarantee complete engagement, the loyalty of their readership is far more measurable than Netflix consumers. Sales plus subscription loyalty equate to an engaged audience.
Building from this, traditional media dominates for Australian consumers with 51% of respondents favouring traditional media (TV, radio, print, etc.) over online alternatives. Whether this continues is unknown but there is still a lot of value in offline forms of media.
“Seventy-six percent of total respondents said they’d be more comfortable sharing their data if they were able to see and edit what had been collected, and 68% indicated that they were interested in taking on those responsibilities if able to do so.”
As mentioned in content consumption, people are relying more on algorithms for discovery. For that to work more efficiently, these algorithms require personal data. And though this may be alarming, through increased transparency, people are comfortable sharing information under two conditions: 1) They can regulate their personal and 2) have complete power on permanent deletion.
Attention is falling
“This year and last year, 91% of respondents multi-tasked while watching TV, up from 79% in 2014… This is even more pronounced for Millennials, 96% of whom multi-task.”
With the proliferation of content, we’ve entered a stage of passive consumption, where we simultaneously consume entertainment but “without fully focusing, interacting or engaging with” what we’re watching/listening to. An example would be browsing Instagram while watching Netflix or turning on the TV as background news while checking emails.
The challenge here is the increased difficulty of measuring such consumption. Sure, analytics say a user watched a TV show for six hours but how do we know if they were watching and or passively consuming whilst multitasking? This is why the value of long-term (news) subscriptions is so high. While you can’t measure how much audiences read, you can measure what they read and for how long.
“Australians have watched these developments from afar, and while there has been no major data security crises of that scale reported down under just yet, consumers are still suffering from a lack of trust. Just 15% of survey respondents believe companies are taking adequate steps to protect their personal data.”
Lastly, and the most unsurprising, is that Australians still haven’t recovered from the Cambridge Analytica scandal in early 2018, though internationally Australia was affected minimally compared to other nations.
While the aftermath saw EU introduce the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) to give citizens complete power of their data, Australia’s Australian Privacy Act 1988 (APA), in essence, provides Australians with similar control. Learn more about the similarities and differences.
Taking this into account, it’s important to note that Australians are willing to share their data to improve user experience, provided they’re in control of how it’s used with complete power to delete it.
What has been the most alarming or surprising finding in this report? Let us know. Hopefully these stats will support your preparation to effectively navigate communication in 2019. And if you have any questions get in touch.
Also published on Medium.