Media Usage Study - July 2018

Totum Research Inc., one of Canada's leading media research organizations, conducted a survey to determine news media and advertising preferences.  Local news is most important to Albertans, more than any other.  The research makes it clear.

The survey was conducted July 8 - 18, 2018 by telephone and to Albertans 18 years of age or older not living in the major cities of our province. Residents of the following Census Metropolitan Areas (CMAs) were not included in the sample: Calgary, Edmonton, Medicine Hat, Wood Buffalo, Grand Prairie

About News

    • The majority of people follow all types of news most of the time.
      • There is a stark difference between rural and urban communities.
      • Respondents follow local news most of the time.
      • International, national and provincial news are followed most closely by people who read the local newspaper in printed and/or online format.
    • Local news is most important to more Albertans than any other type.
    • The printed local newspaper is the preferred source for all local information including news about people, events, jobs, businesses or sales and schools.
      • The printed local newspaper - preferred for info about local government programs and initiatives.
      • Television and the printed local newspaper  - preferred sources for info about provincial government programs and initiatives.
    • The printed local newspaper is the most trusted medium for news and advertising.
      • Two respondents in five distrust news and advertising in social media.


    About Local Newspapers and Their Websites

    • 60% or more of the respondents receive the printed local newspaper at home.
    • 80% read a typical issue of the printed local newspaper weekly.
      • The average time spent reading the printed local newspaper is 22 minutes per issue. 
      • The typical issue has an average of 1.5 readers per household.
    • 16% of respondents also visit the local newspaper’s website weekly spending almost 20 minutes on the site.

    About Digital Media

    • While significant numbers of people are involved in various online activities, for many of these activities half or more say their internet connection impacts their level of involvement.
      • 15% of respondents have no internet access.
    • The most important activities for people with internet connection are email, texting and researching products and services.
      • The vast majority of online participants spend 15 minutes per day or less on any one activity.

    About Advertising

    • More than 2 in 5 respondents find ads in the printed local newspaper useful.
      • By contrast, 80% of respondents ignore, don’t notice or are annoyed by ads on websites.
      • Up to 30% of respondents use an ad blocker to avoid digital advertising.
    • Ads in the printed community newspaper are more likely than ads in other media to inspire action
      • Ads in the printed local newspaper produced more action than did online ads in every respect except going online for more information
    • While fewer than 40%  of respondents occasionally click on digital ads intentionally, almost 60% say they occasionally do this accidentally.
      • Irrelevance, privacy and security were the most common reasons for respondents to avoid clicking on digital ads.


    We acknowledge the financial support of the Government of Canada
    through the Canada Periodical Fund of the Department of Canadian 

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