The Demographic Composition of US Media Audiences

December 8, 2015

Experian-Online-Media-Usage-Comparison-by-AgeThe media environment is growing more fragmented, presenting marketers with fresh challenges but also new ways of reaching target audiences. MarketingCharts’ latest report – the 2015 edition of “US Media Audience Demographics” – enables marketers to cut through the hype and identify the channels that most appeal to various demographic groups.

The data-driven study – which acts as a new and expanded update to last year’s popular inaugural report – sizes the relative audience of various major offline and online media types across age groups, household incomes, and races and ethnicities (Hispanic and non-Hispanic Black). It then delves into various sub-segments of these media, breaking down their demographic composition and offering cross-media comparisons.

Top-level findings include:

  • Among traditional media types, local newspapers draw the oldest audience, while national newspapers attract the most affluent;
  • While there is a strong skew towards youth for the online TV and internet radio audiences, magazine and newspaper website visitors tend to be more in the middle-aged brackets; and
  • Instagram draws the most diverse (on a racial and ethnic basis) audience of the 5 leading social networks analyzed.

Overall, the study examines the audiences for:

  • TV (broadcast, cable, online viewers);
  • Radio (terrestrial, online listeners);
  • Newspapers (national, local, website visitors);
  • Magazines (monthly publications, website visitors); and
  • Five leading social networks (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and Pinterest).

Other topics answered by the report include the offline media that are most appealing to youth and the online and social media that have the most affluent skew.

The 56-page Debrief contains 48 charts, including a series of cheat sheets providing quick media comparisons across demographic variables. It also comes with MarketingCharts’ value guarantee: if you don’t find the data useful, simply let us know and we’ll refund you your purchase.

Head on over here for your copy of the report.

About the Data: The media data (with the exception of social networks) is derived from Experian Marketing Services’ Spring 2015 Simmons National Consumer Study. The high quality, nationally representative study is the result of a comprehensive, continuously fielded survey of approximately 25,000 US adults, including both English and Spanish speakers. All data concerning offline media is from a base sample of US adults; data concerning online TV, internet radio, newspaper websites and magazine websites is drawn from a base sample of US online adults.

The social networking data is derived from comScore figures analyzing online US adults’ cross-platform activity in June 2015.

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