Report Identifies Likely Targets for Internet Marketers

IDC/LINK said the results of its latest
MediaTraits study characterizes progressive parents, the country club set,
and the single boomers as the three best near-term prospects for new media
products and services.


The study groups U.S. households into 10 distinct segments based on
activities, lifestyles, media consumption patterns, and attitudes toward new
technology.


The report presents PredictiveProfiles, or descriptions of the different
household segments, that examine current behavior and provide an indication
of future behavior. The report also presents a picture of what online
households will look like in the next nine months.


Today, the typical U.S. online household is younger, wealthier, more likely
to be married, and more apt to have children at home than the average U.S.
household. By year-end 1998, 23% of U.S. homes will be online.


“IDC/LINK’s MediaTraits analysis enables companies to target their consumer
customers in a much more powerful way than simple summary statistics,” said
Jill Frankle, program manager of IDC’s Consumer Internet research service.
“As we move from broad-based advertising to more of a direct marketing
model, this type of analysis becomes a critical tool for all companies.”


The types of households that have emerged as the ripest near-term opportunity
for Internet advertisers and marketers represent roughly 28.5 million U.S.
households.


The first segment, the single boomers, are younger, mostly unmarried, with no
children, and have slightly above average income. Specifically, the boomers
are hot prospects for e-commerce service, according to the report.


The second group is the progressive parents, a wealthier segment interested
in any media activity that caters to their children’s entertainment or
education.


Last is the country club set, composed of older, wealthier couples with
strong daily online usage. As a whole, these New Media Households show
higher-than-average PC penetration, online usage, and interest in a variety
of consumer Internet and new media products and services.


Other findings of the IDC/LINK study reveal the median online household
income is almost 45% greater than that of the average. Nearly 30% of online
households have children of some age going online. And more than 56% of
online households report a female head of household as an online user.


In addition, the research shows little evidence of the Internet replacing
television as a mass medium. The online households watch on average only an
hour and a half less television per week than the average U.S.
household–about 6% less.


“There is interest in consumer Internet entertainment, but it is more along
the lines of using the medium as an information or planning resource for
leisure activities and hobbies,” said Frankle. “There is little interest
among the best target households for making the Internet glitzy or more
amenable to television-style entertainment programming or gaming–at least
until the bandwidth issue is resolved.”


The report, “The New Media Household,” assesses the responses of a
nationally representative and projectable sample of 2,000 households
regarding ownership, purchase intent, and attitudes toward a wide range of
electronic and media products and services. Data collection was
accomplished through telephone interviews in IDC/LINK’s 15th annual U.S.
Home Media Consumer Survey.


Data charts illustrating the study’s findings can be accessed online.


IDC/LINK, an IDC subsidiary, researches and analyzes the home computing
market, leading-edge technologies in telecommunications and new media, and
the convergence of computing and consumer electronics.

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