Real Life Is The New "Celebrity"

  • by October 26, 2001
Just-released findings from a Knowledge Networks/Statistical Research "flash" study suggest that, in the wake of September 11th, U.S. consumers are focusing on "essentials" rather than escapism in their magazine reading preferences and personal activities.

Conducted October 5th to 10th among Knowledge Networks' national panel, the survey asked respondents if, compared to 12 months ago, their interest in specific types of magazine articles has increased, decreased, or stayed the same, and whether they are taking part in certain kinds of activities more often, less often, or at the same pace.

Of the magazine article categories studied, only two registered net gains in consumer interest: news (+32%) and business and personal finance (+5%). Interest in parenting, home, and food content was essentially unchanged from a year ago.

By contrast, KN/SRI's research shows a net decrease of interest in articles about:
* fashion and beauty (-12%),
* people and personalities (-6%),
* sports (-5%),
* movies (-5%), and
* travel (-4%).

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These changes seem to echo a trend toward "nesting" in consumers' recreational activities. KN/SRI's study indicates overall decreases in the number of people attending movies (-10%) and sporting events (-8%) and in those hosting parties - both large (-18%) and small (-9%).

There was, however, a net increase in respondents "do[ing] something special for a close friend or family member"(+10%) versus a year ago.

The data are based on responses from 568 households in the Knowledge Networks panel. KN/SRI is one of the country's most respected sources of information on media and their audience, servicing top advertisers, agencies, and media companies, as well as manufacturers, retailers, and others.

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