The media lives! Well it lives, but it’s not what it used to be. This week I looked at trends about key sectors in the U.S. news media industry, including everything from media audience to media economics. The Pew Research Center has been tracking data throughout the years to compare and analyze how media is changing – and boy is it changing.
We are in the middle of a huge media shift and learning how to adapt for some companies may be tough. It’s tough for newspapers who are still figuring out how to adapt and advance at a rate as fast as other media platforms. According to the Pew Research Center, newspaper newsroom investment in employees is down 15 percent from 2016. Print and digital newspaper audience is down 10 percent from 2016. Total estimated newspaper revenue is also down 16 percent from 2016.
Sorry to start off on a dreary note, but I thought I’d hit with the tough news first.
But it’s not all bad folks!
Although viewership has declined in some time slots for cable news, revenue has continued to increase for stations like CNN, FOX and MSNBC, who saw a 10 percent increase in revenue in 2017.
Hispanic journalists and news directors have increased in numbers since 2017 and that’s something to celebrate since the Hispanic population is such a big part of the United State’s overall entity.
Things are looking pretty good for radio, too. The audience for terrestrial radio remains steady and high. According to Nielsen Media Research data published by the Radio Advertising Bureau, in the year 2017, 90 percent of Americans ages 12 and up listened to terrestrial radio in a given week. And more and more people are listening to podcasts. The chart below shows the percent of Americans ages 12 and older who have listened to a podcast – in the past month, in the past week and ever.
Public broadcasting has also found recent success with audience for public television growing 17 percent from 2016 to 2017. And with all that audience comes an increase in revenue. Nationally NPR increased revenue six percent from 2016 to 2017. Local public radio also increased revenue and station membership from 2016 to 2017.
So while media changes and different outlets have to adapt and find different ways to create revenue for their businesses, people still need and care about the media. I believe people are constantly curious and have a right to know what’s going on in their communities, in their states and in their country. We are all impacted by things going on all around the world, so we need to stay connected. Weather it’s a trendy podcast that keeps you up to date with pop culture or local cable news that keeps you up to date with hard news – it’s all important.
So support local journalism, listen to the radio, invest in monthly subscriptions from your favorite outlets because you deserve to stay informed!