“I read the news today, oh boy.”
– Lennon & McCartney

Hoping this isn’t an April Fool’s joke (dateline April 1), I’m heartened to see results from this McKinsey study showing adults under 35 have increased by nearly 20 percent their consumption of news since 2007. Moreover, a greater proportion of them “profess a growing interest in getting news from print newspapers.”

As the spouse of a print journalist and a long-term believer in the value of: (a) the value of local/state newspapers in democracy; and (b) the value of being able to hold something of a decent size in your hand (as opposed to my beloved iPhone) whilst eating breakfast in the morning, this news about news butters my bagel, indeed. Until medical science cures how human eyesight changes with age or the iPad becomes reasonable enough for everyone to have, hold and carry around with ’em, print newspapers should be a critical part of our lives. I love the Web and am a techno geek, to be sure; but until Web news can support the kind of journalism that keeps citizens informed about local school board decisions and tax rates, ferrets out corruption and serves as an objective watchdog of government, business and society, the continued health and well-being of newspapers in our democracy must be a societal priority.

Posted via web from Finding the Rhythm

McKinsey Survey: Some Hope for Newspapers in Greater News Consumption by Young

By Mark Fitzgerald

Published: April 01, 2010

CHICAGO A new survey of news consumption in Britain should comfort newspaper publishers everywhere, according to McKinsey & Co. Adults under the age of 35 have significantly increased their consumption of news in the past three years — and they profess a growing interest in getting news from print newspapers.

The McKinsey survey, reported by Philipp M. Nattermann of the consulting firm’s London media and entertainment practice, says average daily news consumption in the U.K. increased to 72 minutes from 60 minutes three years ago — “an increase driven almost entirely by people under the age of 35.”

There’s also more urgency to get the news first in this group, McKinsey found, with about 40% saying they needed to be the first to hear breaking news. This need for immediacy is reflected in younger news consumers’ choice of media: they overwhelmingly prefer to get their news from television and the Internet,” the report says.

But newspapers remain the most trusted medium, with 66% of respondents describing the paper as “informative and confidence inspiring.” That compares with 44% for television and just 12% for the Web.

“This suggests that newspapers have further scope to go beyond news, to drive reader interest and advertising revenues at the same time,” Nattermann writes.

And “interest” in getting news from newspapers has grown, the survey found. Among people aged 16 to 24, interest in newspaper news grew to 64% from 53% in a 2006 survey. In the 25-34 cohort, interest grew to 61% from 51%.

There is an on-the-other-hand, though. This survey finds what countless others have: Little enthusiasm for paying for newspaper online content.

“We found that while there is modest potential to increase online revenues, they will be insufficient to compensate for the decline of print,” the report says. “Indeed, even in a hypothetical scenario where online-only versions of existing newspapers and magazines cost 75% less than the print versions, only 14% of news consumers said they would pay for the online content.”

McKinsey’s advice is for newspapers to use that trust factor to find revenue in transactions.

“The combination of editorial content, ads, and selected commercial offers — while clearly separated — benefits advertisers and is of practical use to readers,” the report says.

Mark Fitzgerald (mfitzgerald@editorandpublisher.com) is editor of E&

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]
“It’s a matter of trust.”
– Billy Joel

He'll be back

I really, really like this post from @mashable (Greg Ferenstein) about how to build trust in the world of social media.   As the article accurately points out, the rules — while certainly related to the non-digital world — are somewhat different in the Web 2.0 world (gosh, is anybody still using that term?).  The videos from Gov. Schwarzeneggar (thanking Twitterers) and Domino’s CEO (apologizing for the YouTube fiasco) are perfect examples of the article’s main thrust regarding authenticity, credibility and effectiveness.Ferenstein draws on the work of Professor Judy Olson, an expert in the psychology of trust, and applies lessons from that research to today’s digital conversation landscape.  Read this section of his article with Twitter, Facebook and YouTube in mind and see what bubbles to the surface:

People are willing to pass judgment, with or without good information. Where examples of one’s competence or reputation are lacking, people will construct whole profiles of another’s personality from what little information is available.

And, as Ferenstein points out, the keys to credibility in today’s communication environment are not far from our grasp:

Few, if any, educational institutes teach the art of proper digital communication. Most of us have simply made up an impromptu strategy and crossed our fingers in the hopes that disaster doesn’t strike. With a bit of help from our friends in the fields of psychology and information technology, we can apply the age-old intuitions of face-to-face conversation to whatever advances in technology come our way. [emphasis added]

When public relations is practiced correctly, it is an amalgam of communication theory, marketing, business, economics, psychology, political science, sociology, literature, history, science and a host of other disciplines.  Well-read practitioners who are students of human behavior and psychology hold the keys to the social media kingdom in their hands if they give themselves permission to let go of biases and stereotypes.

For anyone in the public relations business — especially the crisis communications field — this article is a must-read and one that is worth pondering.

Posted via web originally from Finding the Rhythm

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]