A majority of teen girls (52%) would like to be informed about current events, but they say the media isn’t giving them the content they deserve, according to Engine Group's Cassandra and online publisher Clover Letter.
The teens surveyed indicated that they are fed up with so-called “clickbait” reports and want smarter and more serious news content delivered in their language and tailored to the platforms and devices they use daily, says Melanie Shreffler, senior insights director, Cassandra.
"Marketers and advertisers should realize that teenage girls aren’t flighty, superficial, and celebrity-obsessed. Rather, they’re smart young women who want to be addressed as such," says Shreffler.
According to the study, 32% would rather be uninformed than have media waste their time with clickbait, and 37% say they "hate" clickbait. And 32% also think less of media outlets that use such sensationalist tactics.
More than one in three (35%) believe the news media talks down to them and 43% wish there was more uplifting content on the Internet. One in five (21%) aren't sure where to go to find more positive news.
And the depiction of female influencers in the media has a negative effect on those polled with 47% saying they feel bad about themselves based on how the media portrays females. A similar percentage (45%) says news makes them feel depressed.
"They want to read stories about fellow teen girls just as much - if not more - than they do celebrities, and they want content they can relate to," says Liza Darwin, co-founder, Clover Letter. "They respond to advertising that’s in line with these values. Traditional media is a hard sell, mostly because teen girls aren’t on it."
Teen girls are interested in learning about current events. "In fact, they’re more interested in stories about world news and women’s issues than they are in celebrity news,” adds Shreffler. “They’re craving more serious news, yet few sources are delivering on this."
Teen girls are also turning away from traditional channels. Their top five news resources are family/friends (58%), TV (56%), and social media platforms Facebook (50%), Instagram (45%) and Snapchat (43%). They are also significantly more likely than Millennial women (21% vs.12%) to use push notifications to get their news.
"It’s not so surprising that teens aren’t picking up the Sunday Times on newsstands, but we didn’t expect to hear that teens aren’t visiting these legacy news brands online, either," says Casey Lewis, co-founder, Clover Letter. "On the flip side, we were interested to see that teen girls felt empowered about how influencers portray themselves on social media, which just shows how much teen girls want to be in control of their own image."