“Compiling and editing this information with Caxton Local Newspapers and SPARK Media has convinced me that there is a pressing need for business leaders to re-assess their media investments and, certainly, to reconsider the role that local newspapers should play in their media strategies.” Britta Reid

Britta Reid spent decades working for media agencies and owners, across the fields of insight, strategy, implementation and leadership. Always a devoted mentor, she now relishes the opportunity to share her experience and views with curious media professionals through writing, training and consultation.

Local newspapers are not only in good health in these times of COVID-19, but they dominate the newspaper market and have a real relevance in the lives of their readers.

There is ample international evidence that suggests that media decision-makers must rethink their approaches as they assist businesses to rebuild.

Traditional media continue to outperform online media

Hot off the press, with fieldwork carried out between September and November 2020, is “Re-evaluating media for recovery: Understanding the true value of media for growing brands during challenging times”. This report demonstrates that TV, radio, newspapers, magazines and out of home media outrank social and digital media in their ability to deliver on the attributes that make brands grow in recessionary times.

One salutary example is that newspaper advertisements are:

  • 27% more effective than social media
  • 50% more effective than on-line video and
  • 66% more effective than on-line

It is authored by Ebiquity, a global data- driven solutions company specialising in guiding brand owners in the extraction of efficiency and effectiveness from their media spend.

Consumers and media decision-makers think about media differently

That there is a disjunction between how consumers and marketers view media, is also made in the Media Reaction 2020 study, published by Kantar, a global evidence-based insight and consulting company.

This shows that consumers overwhelmingly favour offline channels, with cinema ads, sponsored events, magazine ads, digital OOH ads and newspaper ads topping the global ad equity charts; by contrast, marketers prefer TV and digital formats. Each of these groups bring differing perspectives to their assessment of media. Marketers’ pursuit of audience size, impact, behavioural targeting and innovation can lead them to forget that consumers tend to prefer uninterrupted media experiences. Consumers do not appreciate excessive ad volumes or excessive creepy ad targeting. Understanding what consumers want from their media experiences and intelligent placement and tailoring can only enhance communication effectiveness. Print’s relative strengths are trust, relevance and low levels of intrusion.

Subjective perception drives media decision-making

There is a significant gap between the reality and the perceptions of reality about which media channels are the most effective. The misperceptions held by media decision-makers overwhelmingly favour digital media; these decision-makers tend to be young, educated digital natives working in a pressured industry which emphasises innovation. However, neomania and System 1 thinking do not make for the best media investment decisions.

 

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