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BizReport : Blogs & Content archives : February 18, 2010

Nielsen: What consumers will - and won't - pay for content

When it comes to traffic, publishers know that fresh content is the key. Consumers no longer what a tiny soundbite, they want a lot of content and they want it all the time. But, what kind of content is worth paying for and what isn't? That is a question many publishers are still trying to answer.

by Kristina Knight

Do you have the right content? By 'right' we mean the kind of content that is worth money to consumers? A new report from The Nielsen Company sheds light on what content is - and is not - worth cash to global consumers. The bad news? More than 80% of consumers prefer free content.

First the content which consumers definitely will not pay for. Researchers found that 'homegrown' content is least likely to appeal in a pay-for-play model. Most consumers want 'homegrown', or user-generated, content but they don't want to pay for Joe Smith's home video of his kid on a swing. Also, more than 70% of survey respondents said all online content must improve before they will pay for it.

• 79% of consumer say they will stop visiting online hubs if made to pay for content
• 62% believe content they pay for should be theirs to share and copy as they see fit

Now, for the content consumers will pay for:

• 78% of consumers believe offline newspaper subscriptions should include free online content, but they are willing to pay for newspaper content if they don't already subscribe to the paper
• 34% of consumers believe online content will decline if publishers do not charge for it
• Professional - journalist written, not 'citizen' or 'citizen journalist' written, is worth a small fee

How do consumers want to pay for content? There is no hard-and-fast rule, at least at this point. But 52% prefer some kind of micropayment system wil 43% would only reply that 'easier' payment methods were necessary.

Download the full report,Changing Models: A Global Perspective on Paying for Online Content, here.

Tags: content publishing, content revenue, content revenue model, Nielsen Compay, online content

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