Media Matters goes beyond simply reporting on current trends and hot topics to get to the heart of media, advertising and marketing issues with insightful analyses and critiques that help create a perspective on industry buzz throughout the year. It's a must-read supplement to our research annuals.
The MPA’s recently published Online Engagement Report focuses on the performance of magazine media brands’ web/mobile websites compared to non-magazine media brands that cover the same topic (for example, Bon Appetit is a magazine media brand site, while Delish is a non-magazine media brand site). Not surprisingly, they found that the magazine brands outperformed the non-magazine ones in almost every genre, and in visits, minutes and page views per visitor.
We found the variations within magazine genres to be of interest, and we pulled this data from the report to take a closer look (see table). As can be seen, spectator sports sites were far and away the most heavily visited, with 9.1 visits per visitor. They also led in minutes per visitor and page views, which is likely due to sports fans checking in on their favorite teams—particularly with the Super Bowl and March Madness falling in this quarter. Future reports will reveal if these levels remain consistent from quarter to quarter.
In any case, the findings show that site use varies greatly by genre, with some drawing audiences who spend more time browsing the latest celebrity gossip, while others pop on to get a needed recipe. As the magazine industry focuses increasingly on their digital properties, and print editions continue to suffer readership declines, research like this provides a welcome—and necessary—perspective.
An interesting dataset from OpenX reported which content genres are considered “most valued” by respondents. In its 2019 Consumer OTT Report, which was derived from a survey conducted in February-March 2018 by the Harris Poll of 2,000 U.S. OTT users, movies came out on top, with 74% of the total respondent choosing it as most important to them, followed distantly by news, at 49%. Obviously, had the question included network content, we would expect the results to feature news and live events more prominently.
Nevertheless, we took a look at how the responses varied by generation, and we present our indices below. Here we see that Millennials were 22% less likely than the total respondent group to cite news as their “most valued” content (78 index), while Boomers were 31% more likely (131 index). Generally speaking, OpenX’s findings are in line with TV genre audience profiles by age that we report in TV Dimensions 2019, suggesting that age groups tend to gravitate towards specific programming types, regardless of the platform being studied.