Print and TV still main channels in reaching Filipino consumers

Is online media really going to replace print and/or TV? Claims made my people who are online fanatics and those who run online companies. We can’t blame them really, they have to say such things to keep their entities alive – which I think is bad strategy.

If there’s any truth to this claim, it has to take backseat for awhile especially here in the Philippines as global market research company Synovate released the result of their findings indicating print and TV are still very much in demand in the Philippines. Advertising on print is appreciated by Filipinos: 56% said they like to look through ads in magazines and newspaper to see what they say. Pay and Cable TV saw an increase in subscribers from 51% in 2007/ 2008 to 55% in 2008/ 2009.

The fourth annual Synovate Media Atlas study delivers an in-depth perspective on Filipino consumers aged 15 to 64 across all socio economic groups and gives marketers, advertisers, and media agencies deep insights to improve brand building and sales effectiveness.

The study found an increasing number of upscale socio A and B groups reading newspapers, from 56% in 2007/ 2008, to 64% in 2008/ 2009.

“Many marketers are talking about a flight to quality, and newspapers are showing their increased importance as a good medium to reach those who have money to spend,” says Steve Garton, global executive director of media at Synovate.

Sunday newspapers, both English and Tagalog, turned in strong performances. For the first time, over half (53%) of the AB socio audience read a Sunday paper. A review of readership numbers also showed demand for general interest magazines, while magazine consumption as a whole has remained steady.

On the TV front, fifty-five percent of respondents currently have Pay or Cable TV, an increase of 4% from 2007/ 2008. Terrestrial TV viewership remained at near-saturation levels, with 98% relaxing in front of the TV in the past week.

Comments Steve Garton, “The latest results of Media Atlas show print and TV in demand. As marketers consider how much to allocate to digital, mainstream media remains effective in reaching Filipino consumers.”

On the web front, Internet access in the Philippines stands at 40%, and most log on everyday. In the Greater Manila Area, 46% of respondents have access. When different age categories were compared, the younger age segment turned out to be the highest at 60%.

More people access the web from an Internet café (54%) than at home (47%), followed by at work (17%). The survey revealed a shift towards broadband away from dial-up as connection to the internet from home. Wired broadband/ Hi-speed showed a 12% increase to 48% in 2008/2009.

Says Steve Garton, “Email, chatting, and games are the main passions of the digerati, with 70% of online consumers engaging in these activities. 81% indicated they maintain multiple social network accounts, while a similar percentage said they uploaded and downloaded music from the internet.”

What are the top items that Filipinos search for online? 48% searched for music, which reinforces their role as the “Latinos of Asia.” 30% said they go online to look for unbiased opinion on products.

So again, is online going to replace print and/or TV, not in the immediate future. To me, they will co-exist, they will compliment each other. But to those who still insist, this is what I have to say – if online is really successful, them how come there are online companies currently in shambles, and online companies that are reportedly for sale? Just asking.

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