A great post (en francais) from Jeff Mignon at Media Cafe on what younger readers want re news. Jeffs’s an expert and this is a great read.
1. Contrary to popular belief, young readers, from primary school to their mid-30’s are interested in news. They’re simply reading different publications such as the freebie Metro, YahooNews and for children and adolescents, French publisher PlayBac‘s array of colorful journaux.
2. The theory that as people get older they tend to read more was proven wrong by a survey done by American marketer Clark, Martire & Bartolomeo, who found that 63% of 1999’s 45-54 year olds read a paper. Back in 1967 when this demographic was 18-24, 71% of them picked up the daily paper.
3. If newspapers focus on attracting just the 18 and up crowd, they’ll be losing out. Reading habits begin at a much younger age and develop during adolescence.
4. Newspapers can no longer maintain the philosophy that one-size-fits-all. Especially now with the Internet, we are in the age of ‘personalization.’ One publication is not going to satisfy all demographics.
5. Price will play a huge role in the future of the newspaper. Now that younger generations have learned that they can find quality news for free in most places, daily newspapers will find it increasingly difficult to remain on a pay basis.
6. Young readers are not just looking for ‘infotainment.’ They want a bit of everything, as well demonstrated by free commuter papers such as Metro and 20 Minutes.
7. Advertisers are wrong in assuming that young readers don’t have the disposable cash necessary to influence the market. A study of American youth showed that they spend USD 149 billion, 15% of that being spent online. The young also influence a whopping 80% of what their parents buy.
8. Size matters. To survive, broadsheets must switch to compact. Mignon-Media (Media Cafe’s parent company) suggests an A4 format based on studies it has been conducting for ten years with children, adolescents and the 18-34 young adult demographic.”
(Translation via John Burke of the World Editors’ Forum–thanks! Via editorsweblog)