Consumers are creating their own “personal prime times” to engage with media throughout the day, according to a report by The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB). Understanding this behavior across age groups and devices creates opportunities for marketers to cater their targeted marketing strategies.
Released during Mobile World Congress on Tuesday, Personal Prime Time looks at the customer journey on a typical workday across episodic shows, music, news, podcasts, short videos, social media and weather.
All three age groups studied—millennials, Gen X and Baby Boomers—share a common trend in that they engage with the example media types several times throughout the day. The difference, IAB found, is in times of day, devices used and reasons for engagement.
“In the age of ‘big data’ it makes no sense for advertisers to place their focus solely on big numbers, when they can take advantage of insights that can help them pinpoint the right customer, the right way, at the right time,” Anna Bager, executive vice president of Industry Initiatives at IAB said in a statement.
For this study, millennials are defined as between the ages of 18-34, Gen X is 35-54 and Baby Boomers are over the age of 55.
While 82 percent of millennials and 66 percent of Baby Boomers report checking social media during various dayparts or all day long, motivations for doing so are different. Respondents were provided with a list of “need states” to choose from that best describe their reasons for engaging.
For millennials, social media is used to “pass the time” and “be entertained” while Boomers are looking to “connect with others.” Younger consumers turn to their mobile devices to check social media, while older generations use a desktop computer.
Among the 69 percent of consumers who regularly check social media, 45 percent report the highest concentration during the hours of 8:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m. This is also the time period in which all respondents perceived the highest value of the information they were receiving.
“Brands should no longer expect a single, universal moment of greatest engagement,” said IAB alongside its findings. “While audience size might shift between different times of day, every daypart is ripe for meaningful consumer connections.”
Among respondents that engage in media on a regular basis throughout the day, popular activities varied by generation.
Consumers 55 and over check news and weather most frequently. Gen X listens to music and checks the weather most often, while millennials listen to music and check social media. Among all three age groups, podcasts were the least popular in terms of being conducted on a regular basis.
Seventy percent of consumers who say they regularly post on social media do so multiple times during a typical weekday.
All generations studied check news most frequently in the early morning hours at 38 percent, followed by the early evening at 36 percent. The least popular time is during late night at just 10 percent.