Media Agency Execs Prove 'Early Adopters' On Consumer Media Technologies

Media agency executives spend a considerable amount of time debating the impact new media technologies are having on the consumer marketplace, but it seems the real impact so far has been on the media executives themselves. Take digital video recorders (DVRs), or personal video recorders. While only 15.4 percent of consumers say they now "own" such a device, 26.7 percent of media agency executives claim to be a DVR household, according to results of a series of surveys on media technologies and consumption habits by consumers and industry executives conducted by MediaPost and InsightExpress.

The findings are not surprising given that the professionals are charged with evaluating the impact new and potential media technologies ultimately can have on consumers, but the divide is considerable. For the most cutting edge new technologies, things like Wi-Fi, MP3 players or satellite radio, the differential is three or four times the rate of consumer adoption. Even for something like broadband Internet access, which many in the profession take as a necessity, penetration among media agency pros is considerably higher than among the consumer population.

The findings make sense when you consider the psychographic disposition of the industry pros versus consumers. While 27.1 percent of media agency executives consider themselves "early adopters" of new media technologies, only 14.6 percent of consumers typified themselves that way. Among media agency executives "C-level" executives were most likely to be early adopters (35.7 percent), while senior agency executives (media directors/associate media directors) were least likely (19.2 percent).

Adoption Rate Of New Media Technologies

 
Media Agency Execs Consumers
Early Adopter 27.1% 14.6%
Buy It When Needed 45.2% 44.0%
Wait And See 24.1% 28.6%
Only When I Have To 3.6% 12.8%

Source: MediaPost Advisory Panel, InsightExpress consumer panel. Based on a self-administered survey conducted online in April by InsightExpress.

Interestingly, the penetration rates are not so spread out among types of media agency executives themselves. C-level executives were most likely to be ahead of the curve on most new media technologies with the exception of satellite radio. Media planners were average by trade standards across all new media technologies, with the exception of MP3 players, where they excel. Also interesting, is the fact that the media adoption patterns of online media agency specialists were not appreciably different than those of the average industry executive.

Media Technologies 'Owned'


Digital High
Video Speed Satellite
Recorder Internet Wi-Fi MP3 Radio
All Media Agency Execs 26.7% 75.2% 22.8% 37.6% 7.6%
C-Level Execs 35.7% 89.3% 42.9% 46.4% 3.6%
Senior Management 24.7% 69.9% 12.3% 31.5% 6.8%
Middle Management 25.8% 74.2% 29.0% 35.5% 3.2%
Planners 26.7% 80.0% 20.0% 60.0% 6.8%
Buyers 12.5% 75.0% 0.0% 12.5% 0.0%
Online-Only 28.9% 79.6% 27.4% 40.8% 8.5%

Consumers 15.4% 49.8% 5.2% 13.6% 3.2%

Source: MediaPost Advisory Panel, InsightExpress consumer panel. Based on a self-administered survey conducted online in April by InsightExpress. >