Survey: Local TV, newspapers still rule

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A survey of consumer media habits suggests that local newspapers and TV news still rule the roost, though consumers are increasingly turning to blogs and other new media for information, and companies utilize these channels poorly.

The survey of 1,490 adult Americans and 500 communications professionals by Ketchum and the Annenberg Strategic Public Relations Center found that nearly 75% of consumers rely on local TV news while 68.9% depend on their local newspaper, and that this pattern cuts across generations. Meanwhile, 13.4% use blogs, only 4.8% use podcasts, and 4.5% get media via cell phones (the survey did not indicate the prevalence of blogs as an information source among communications professionals).

However, new media usage skews much more heavily in younger audiences, and youngsters are the most well-rounded in their media diets. More than half of those 18-24 read local newspapers, and 16.4% read a national newspaper.

The survey's authors say companies misunderstand the way consumers utilize company Web sites. Young people, in particular, include the sites as one of many information sources when making purchasing decisions, and are ill-served by the standard menu of news releases they find.

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