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BizReport : : October 15, 2012

Digital barely dents Affluents' desire for print publications

A new Ipsos MediaCT's 2012 Mendelsohn Affluent Survey has found that Affluent and Super-Affluent consumers, despite their wealth of gadgets, still covet print publications.

by Helen Leggatt

ipsos reid logo.jpgAffluent (HHI $100K+) and Super-Affluent (HHI $250k+) households account for around 59 million Americans. More than half own a smartphone, 26% personally own a tablet and 47% live in a household with a tablet.

Yet, despite being surrounded by all that technology, the new survey, subtitled "The State of the Affluent Consumer," found only a small decline in Affluents' use of print since 2011 (-1.3%).

More than 8 in 10 (82%) of those with $100,000 or more in annual household income read print publications, with women being the heaviest print consumers.

The number of Affluents that read national newspapers in hard copy has actually risen since last year, up 3.9% to 11.3 million, that figure rising along with household income levels.

However, Affluents aren't dropping digital for print. On the contrary, it's not an either/or situation. Twice as many Affluents downloaded a magazine app in 2012, compared to 2011, and the number who downloaded a newspaper app rose from 4.6 million in 2011 to 7 million in 2012.

Steve Kraus, chief research and insights officer for Ipsos MediaCT's Audience Measurement Group, believes digital publications are actually increasing consumers' thirst for information and the knock-on effect is that more print is being consumed, too.

"I think that instead of being satiated, consumers are made more hungry for content," said Kraus. "We have yet to see the point that people are tired of it. There's real growth in interest. It's a bit like the all-you-can-eat buffet making you hungrier to try something else."

Tags: Affluent demographic, Affluent trends, digital trends, print magazine, print publications, survey

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