Changes in Consumer Media Consumption
By Jacki Kelley Yahoo! Category Development Officer, Travel | May 04, 2010
We all know the Internet has changed the way people consume media. You'd be hard pressed to find anyone who would dispute this. But lately, the conversation has evolved to include Web 2.0 - a second-generation of Internet-based services that let people collaborate and share information online in new ways. But to understand the true value of this shift, let's talk about Consumer 2.0 - at the heart of Web 2.0.
Consumer 2.0 Defined
Consumer 2.0 is a consumer with infinite choices that are always available and on-demand. Consumer 2.0 has incredible tools that help them sort these choices, allowing them to get what they want when they want with very little effort. Consumer 2.0 is someone who is overworked and overwhelmed. Between 1970 and 2002, annual hours worked per capita in the US rose 20%. The wireless revolution that brought us Blackberry's, PDA's and other mobile devices has facilitated consumers' abilities to multitask and extend their workplaces into homes, airports, hotels and cafes. A recent study by Korn Ferry also showed that four out of five executives are always connected to work through these devices.
A Yahoo! research study exploring broadband habits, found that 81% of consumers who have wireless broadband in their home have taken their computer into the bedroom; 51% have taken it into the kitchen, and a staggering 21% into the bathroom.
Ironically, Consumer 2.0 is also addicted to leisure. While personal savings is at an all-time low of 2.1% of income, entertainment spending is at an all time high of 8.4%. As a prime example of leisure activities, travel is a reflection of this growing trend.
To fit all of these activities into their busy schedules, these consumers have become "master hypertaskers." A recent Yahoo! study on families entitled, "A Family Affair," found that today's family is living on average a 43 hour day. Half of this time is spent on essentials like working, school, sleeping, commuting and errands. The next biggest chunk of time - 24% - is spent consuming media. This number continues to grow and leaves many scratching their heads, wondering how consumers could possibly spend 10.5 hours a day with the Internet, TV, radio and print. Where do they find the time? Well, if we consumed media the way we used to - it would be impossible. But the world has changed forever, and media consumption today happens on top of one another.