As media becomes more ubiquitous, naturally, we consume (and crave!) more of it. The easier it is to consume, the more of it we want. Perhaps most helpful to this trend is that “the media” now goes where we go via our mobile devices. So it’s no shock that, according to eMarketer data, the average time spent per day with “Major Media - Digital” climbed to 5 hours and 43 minute in 2017 and is expected to reach 6 hours and 1 minute in 2018.
Check out the chart below. What is also interesting is that radio – perhaps the unsexiest of platforms - continues to hold strong, even growing in mobile consumption. Even more surprising is that it holds steady in its traditional form (more on that in an upcoming post).
People are still demanding content – perhaps now more than ever. But they are just demanding it on different devices. Regardless of how you get your content, with the plethora of new shows, podcasts, articles, YouTube shows, etc., there will be an uptick in demand for curated content.
But what we would be interested in seeing is the amount of USEFUL content people are consuming. While time on social networks is going up, how much of that is spent on content that you are truly interested in vs. just mindlessly scrolling while killing time before a meeting or on line at the post office? How many posts, articles, gifs, videos, podcasts, etc. can you look back on and say “I learned something.” We are willing to bet if we looked at our media content consumption by those standards, the numbers would drop dramatically.
So while it’s great that there is new content out there and more platforms than ever before with which to consume them, we wonder if at least a portion of that 6 hours spent with major media could be put to better use? What if instead of 6 hours per day, you could reduce that to 3 hours per day and free up another 21 hours in your week? You could learn another language, exercise more, spend more time with family and friends. While we are all addicted to our devices and the constant churn of content, maybe we should look at what we are consuming and if it’s actually worth it. Food for thought….