Young Men Like Online Games and Video Content More Than Sports
"Of all age demographic segments, only college students are online more than men age 18-34," said David Card, VP-research director, JupiterResearch. Card, speaking at Jupiter's Internet Planet conference this week, said that in 2003, 18- to-34-year-old men watched 8 hours of television per week, which is two hours less than the previous year and 2-3 hours less than other age groups. "Evidence suggests it's going to be harder to reach this demographic through TV than it used to be," he said.
Other revealing Web usage information demonstrated that an even younger segment of this demographic views a substantial amount of entertainment content online. Fifty-four percent of 18- to-24-year-old males play action games online, 47 percent viewed video content online, 43 percent visited music/file-sharing sites, and 32 percent went to specific movie sites. Card noted that these behaviors represent a 50 percent increased usage difference over the average male.
Surprisingly, the data revealed that only 30 percent of young men ages 18-24 view sports-related content online, versus nearly 60 percent of older men who view sports content on the Web. Card said that this may seem counterintuitive, but the evidence shows that if marketers ran a NASCAR or NBA campaign online, they would not reach the majority of 18- to-24-year-old males.
When it comes to reaching young men online, interactive content engages them more effectively. Eighteen to 24s are twice as likely to use instant messaging, chat, short message service, and message boards. Card noted that more than 30 percent of 18-24s are willing to trade personal information for customized or exclusive content. Relative to other age groups, this is quite large, he said.
According to the Jupiter data, even newspapers should target young adults. Card said that men ages 18-24 are very interested in local information, but they use the Web to gather that information rather than a newspaper. Young men use local sites to learn about local entertainment; they also prefer the Web for their local and business news, he said. From the data: 47 percent of 18- to-24-year-old males read movie reviews online, 34 percent check for information about local entertainment on the Web, 10 percent check local news, and 18 percent check TV listings.
Jupiter's Card also spoke about the online habits of young consumers at work. He noted that behaviors throughout the day change, as many people who are online at work are in a different frame of mind than those who are online after 5 p.m. He suggested that online publishers look to sell ad inventory in twice-a-day cycles, or dayparts, which are several segments in a day.
For the most part, Card said that young people are hard to reach at work. Forty-nine percent of women ages 18-34 said they do nothing online other than their work, and 44 percent of 18-34 men said the same thing. Card said that most claimed to be too busy to do anything else, while others cited corporate policies against using the Web for personal leisure.
According to Card, the other remaining professionals at work do tend to check their personal email as well as news sites while at work. Email marketing and news sites are the best ways to reach them online during the workday.