Digital Media Accounted for 27.7% of Overall US Media Consumption in 2015
STAMFORD, CT — Being good fishermen, marketers are always interested in knowing which groups are congregating and where to find them. As the old saying goes: fish where the fish are, the latest media forecasts from PQ Media spotlights digital media usage across the United States. According to PQ Media, Generation X, the generation born after the Boomer Generation, are now the heaviest digital media users in the United States.
PQ Media’s Global Consumer Media Usage & Exposure Forecast 2015-19, says Generation X spends an average of 25.3 hours a week in 2015 consuming media on digital devices. In contrast, the Great Generation, those born before 1945, are now the lightest users of digital media averaging 13.2 hours. iGen group, the youngest demographic, had highest share of all generation categories, expending 39.5% of their time on digital media.
Despite the fact that Boomers engage less with digital media, people over 50 are the most valuable generation in the history of marketing, according to Nielsen. They have a net worth that’s almost three times that of other generations. They control about 70% of the wealth in the United States with more than $2.4 trillion in annual income, which accounts for 42% of all after tax income.
Digital media usage is expected to rise even further according to the report, digital media usage in the United States will rise at a 7.3% compound annual growth rate (CAGR) in the 2014-19 period to an average of 23.9 hours per week by 2019, more than double the average time spent in 2009. US digital media usage rose 7.1% in 2015 to 18.0 hours weekly, following a 9.6% increase in 2014, driven by higher smartphone and tablet penetration, the launch of new gaming consoles, and the impact of major political and sporting events.
The fastest-growing digital media channel in the US was mobile audio, with consumer usage surging 33.5% in 2015, fueled by the growing use of music subscription services such as Spotify. Mobile video usage jumped 26.9%, as telecommunications providers like Verizon began offering promotional plans on tablets and smartphones to offset declining data plan prices among its competitors.
PQ Media defines and segments consumer digital media usage consistently across all 15 leading global markets by three broad platform categories (internet media, mobile media, and other digital media) and 22 specific media channels, including online and mobile video; online and mobile social media; online, mobile and console video games; over-the-top video and digital out-of-home media, among others.
Digital media usage accounted for 27.7% of overall US media consumption in 2015, up from 17.3% in 2009, as America’s 18.0-hour weekly average led the world in total time spent with digital media, despite a US computer penetration level that stood at only 80%. Meanwhile, traditional media usage in the US declined 2.4% in 2015 to 46.8 hours weekly, and it will decrease at a 2.1% CAGR through 2019, a drop of more than 10 hours per week since 2009. Television remains the leading combined traditional and digital media silo of choice in the US, with the average consumer viewing 32.4 hours per week, or 50.2%, of all media consumption, driven by the expansion of devices consumers can use to access programming, including TV sets, OTT video, laptop computers and smartphones, accentuated by the increase in scripted shows created for non-TV sets. Combined digital and traditional media usage in the US inched up 0.1% in 2015 to 64.7 hours per week, and it will rise at a CAGR of 0.7% in the 2015-19 period to 67.0 hours.
Nevertheless, the increased availability of other media content, such as user-generated content, as well as younger demos watching less TV will result in total TV usage accounting for less than half of all US media consumption in 2017 for the first time since 1953, when radio was the dominant media choice.
“Increasingly, online and mobile media usage is being driven by the digital brand extensions of traditional media, driving up overall media usage as more content is repurposed for digital devices, such as internet and mobile video streaming of TV programs and movies; online radio stations; web-based multiplayer editions of console video games; and mobile newspaper and magazine apps,” said PQ Media President and COO Patrick Quinn.
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