Reduced Consumer Print Media Time to Lead to Lower Ad Spending for Channel

It’s not exactly a newsflash to announce that consumers are spending less time with print media. But the shift to screen time, whether it’s mobile or TV, is happening quickly. As a result, marketers must be prepared to put their messages in the places where consumers are most likely to see them.

eMarketer has been regularly tracking how much time U.S. adults spend with various forms of media. Their latest research shows that even with many other forms of entertainment at their disposal, people are turning to TV and consuming that content for a grand total of 4 hours and 34 minutes on a daily basis. This is a 10 minute increase in the past year.

Consumers are making more time for their other favorite formats, including the Internet and mobile phones. In total, the average consumer spends 11 hours and 33 minutes engaged with media every day.

Here’s how the numbers break out in hours and minutes:

  • TV/​Video 4:34
  • Internet: 2:47
  • Radio 1:34
  • Mobile 1:05
  • Newspapers 0:26
  • Magazines 0:18
  • Other 0:48

Analysts point out that mobile surpassed the 1 hour mark for the first time. In comparison, the typical consumer spends about 44 minutes daily with newspapers and magazines.

The folks at eMarketer also like to compare the percentage of ad spending on each format to time spent. While TV and Internet are fairly well-​matched, the analysts say that the 15% of ad money spent on traditional newspapers and the 9.7% allocated to magazines is too large. Only 4% of consumer media time goes to newspaper and 2.8% to magazines. In addition, only 10.9% of ad money is being allocated to radio while 14.6% of consumer time is spent with this format.

Over time, marketers will likely adjust the amount of money spent in specific formats to more closely align with time spent. However, there is no substitute for targeting and reaching specific audiences. In some instances, advertising in newspapers will be the best choice while in other cases, a TV ad will be the best bet.

[Source: TV, Mobile See Gains in Viewing Time. Emarketer​.com. 12 Dec. 2011. Web. 15 Dec. 2011] 
Kathy Crosett
Kathy is the Vice President of Research for SalesFuel. She holds a Masters in Business Administration from the University of Vermont and oversees a staff of researchers, writers and content providers for SalesFuel. Previously, she was co-​owner of several small businesses in the health care services sector.