News: Court Young Demos On Social Net Sites

computerTelevision stations that are losing young TV news viewers could get them back -- using social-network sites.

New research from the Iowa-based researcher Crawford Johnson & Northcott, in partnership with brand research group Brand Amplitude, says networks need to reorient their thinking. The perception that young consumers are not interested in news is off-base. They would show interest if news items were available on their social-network sites.

The study shows that more than one-third of online adults are social networkers -- and they want local news and information. If news reports were easily available on their Facebook or Twitter accounts, rather than going to local TV stations' sites, young consumers would be more inclined to consider that content.

But the research group warned that an association by TV stations must be made via the right approach, in consideration of young social-networking customs.

The research, conducted in early March, is based on a series of online focus groups with adults ages 18-30 -- a mix of men and women, college students, those in the workforce and those with a young family.

The study was first reported in TVNewsday.



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