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Phone fatigue pushes millennials to news media

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The ongoing misconception that millennials are not consuming news media may be hindering the potential reach of campaigns, especially when the demographic makes up 15 per cent of the market. MACKENZIE SCOTT speaks with Hyland founder and principal Virginia Hyland.

Smartphones have integrated into the lives of most Australians over the past 10 years. However, the dependence of millenials on the devices has made advertisers increasingly turn toward online advertising and programmatic to reach this group of consumers.

But what about the more than 2.5 million people aged between 14 and 25 who access news media?

“With millennials, they are so pushed by their mobile phones it has become a workhorse,” Ms Hyland says.

“We all enjoy the entertainment of a mobile phone, but we are now finding that a lot of people – on the weekend especially – want to get away from their phones. They want to relax and have the opportunity to just sit back and enjoy the information they are reading.”

Ms Hyland’s media agency Hyland represents some of Australia’s most recognisable cosmetics, haircare and jewellery brands. The client’s audiences generally skew toward a younger, female demographic. Despite this, the agency often engages highly with news media within its campaigns.

From campaign to campaign, the agency will allocate 60 per cent to 40 per cent of media ad spend to news media, depending on the client.

This is a departure from the ongoing media agency trend away from news media – one Hyland is bucking to great success.

Virginia Hyland says that weekend news media is an ideal way to reach readers.
Virginia Hyland says that weekend news media is an ideal way to reach readers.

Smell the roses, take in the ads

One off the perks news media provides is higher engagement with content, as readers are able to take more time to consume advertisers’ messages.

“News media has the ability to actually embrace an audience and really help us through the journey of an audience’s day and talk to them at different points during that time,” she said.

“On the weekends when people are sitting back with the newspaper and having a nice read, they actually are open to message, more than on a weekday when we are all so busy, we are all in and a hurry and we have filled our day constantly with more information.

The observation is backed by research commissioned by News Corp Australia’s metro syndicated magazine insert Stellar, which shows that readers consume content more on the weekend than during the week.

The findings found weekend readers were 4.1 per cent more likely to engage with print content compared to during the week, particularly on Sundays. Weekday readers were also found to be two times more stressed than weekend readers.

“The way we use newspapers, particularly on the weekend, is to really introduce new ideas and new opportunities to talk to an audience,” Ms Hyland said. “It certainly does help us reach the millennial when they are in that relaxed, open mindframe to new messages.”

Ms Hyland continued: “Targeting audiences through a Sunday style lift out is incredibly powerful. I think it important to have those products as part of a media plan because they do have their place and deliver higher frequency.

“In the digital landscape, we hit one person and we hit them once. But we know that with the printed product, it does stay around in people’s households.”

The most effective news media campaigns Hyland run are fragrance launches, which includes Marc Jacobs Fragrances and Calvin Klein Fragrances.

Ms Hyland attributes this to news media’s ability to identify and target specific audiences within print.

Enhanced Media Metrics Australia (emma) data shows that of all news media readers, 2.7 million are affluent, earning more than $80 000 per year.

“When we look at our fragrance launches, when we are looking at fashionable fragrances like Gucci Bloom or Tiffany, we work very closely with that news media stable to make sure we are hitting that affluent audience and they want the latest and greatest in the brands they want to purchase.”

News media has the ability to reach targeted, specific audiences, with a more transparent guarantee of views than online mediums. The trusted medium of print makes reaching millennial demographic convenient.

“Working with news media is a fantastic, dynamic relationship. We work extremely well together to develop campaigns that genuinely strike at the hearts of audiences.

“News media really understands audiences and develops ideas into what the audience really wants to read. The research, the development, and the thinking that goes into the product is incredibly strong and it is a fantastic business to be partnering with.” Ms Hyland said.

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