Not everyone is moving online exclusively. The elephant in the room is digital migration. Amongst marketers and media decision-makers, the perception is that everyone is moving online and away from print. In part, this is because many of them are digital and tech enthusiasts personally, and they bring with them the biases of their own experiences, which do not correspond with the habits of the broader population.
The acceleration of e-commerce, during the pandemic, has been the subject of much overblown discussion. According to a joint Euromonitor and Google project, it is predicted that even in developed markets, online purchases will only account for 22% share by 2024. Bricks and mortar will continue to take the lion’s share.
It's about the behaviour whilst consuming media. A recent Newsworks study, Mental Availability in theDigital Age, suggests that online shopping offers a very limited version of convenience, and is beset by risk, choice overload and many unsatisfactory purchase experiences. Quality mass media play a key role in helping online shoppers by building associations that mitigate against these. (Newsworks is the marketing body for national newspapers in the UK.)
It is no surprise that the outspoken Mark Ritson, award-winning columnist and marketing professor, recently stated that: “Offline media will continue to play a crucial role in an increasingly digital world”. Advertisers and media decision-makers need to use the available evidence of how people currently behave and make decisions. Efficient media aims to reach as many possible customers within each targeted market segment and local newspapers do just that.
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