Affluents Highly Engaged With Traditional Media

September 25, 2012

Although affluent Americans are spending more time online and adopting mobile devices at a greater rate, traditional media channels still have great reach among these estimated 59 million US adults living in households with at least $100,000 in annual household income (HHI), per results from an Ipsos MediaCT survey released in September 2012. And when it comes to ad receptiveness, the largest proportion of affluents surveyed said they were receptive to ads on TV, followed by magazines and newspapers. Other media – such as billboards and direct mail – scored highly for advertising reach, but less so for receptiveness, while radio performed better than websites on both counts.

Ultra-Affluents Show Their Affinity for Print

Data from “The Mendelssohn Affluent Survey 2012” indicates that ultra affluents (those with HHI of $250k+) are 6% more likely than the total affluent population to read 1 or more of the print publications measured. And while the average number of titles read by affluents overall is 8.2, ultra affluents have an index score of 122 on this measure, meaning that they are likely to read more print titles than the average affluent. Similarly, they index above-average (126) when it comes to the average number of issues read, which is 18.7 across the affluent demographic as a whole.

Affluent women also show above-average readership of print publications (index score of 105), average number of titles read (109) and average number of issues read (107).

When it comes to national daily newspaper readership (among the 6 national newspapers measured), ultra affluents are 50% more likely than the average affluent to read 1 or more (36% vs. 24%). They also index above-average when it comes to average number of titles read (index score of 111), and average number of issues read (index score of 121). While affluent women are more likely than the average to read magazines, affluent men are above-average in national daily newspaper readership.

Affluents Watch 16.9 Hours of TV Per Week

The Ipsos study finds that affluents still enjoy watching TV, viewing an average of 16.9 hours per week of content, relatively unchanged from 2011 (17.6 hours). Overall, 97% reported watching TV in the past week; a June report from TVB found 90.5% reporting having watched TV “yesterday”– higher reach than for the $50-75k (87.7%) and

The proportion of affluents watching a broadcast network in 2012 remained fairly stable (at 86%, compared to 88% in 2011), per the Ipsos results, as did the proportion watching a cable network (93% vs. 94%). The most popular types of content viewed in the past week were local news (69%), movies (feature films – 68%), action and adventure (67%), comedy (63%), and drama (57%).

Other Findings:

  • A majority of affluents reported reading print publications about travel (56%), news (54%), and women’s publications (52%), with fashion and beauty (47%) and general editorial (47%) also popular.
  • 58% of affluents listened to radio in the week preceding the survey, although this represented a slight drop from 61% in 2011. Even so, the average amount of hours listeners spent with radio increased from 10.2 to 10.6

About the Data: The Ipsos study was fielded beginning in March, and received 13,794 eligible responses before the July 13 deadline. The results were weighted to demographic targets from the US Census to ensure representativeness, and the large sample size enabled elite groups such as the Ultra Affluent (N=2,997) to be profiled with reliably large sample sizes.

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