October 27th, Glonn, Germany
Reading in the digital age
Capscovil conducted a survey among its network of business professionals with regard to their reading habits to find out how different content is perceived.
In fast-paced times where information is only one touch of the screen away, we wanted to know how important reading still is to business professionals within our network. And no, short messages on WhatsApp or Snapchat did not count as reading.
What type of reading do people in business prefer? Are books a thing of the past? How much time are professionals willing to spend on a piece of content? And are ads efficient? How well received is marketing content? The answers to the last two are especially important with regard to financing reading material.
We asked how many like to read feature articles, magazines, non-fiction books, novels or other content. The results are more than interesting. They show that two types of reading material dominate the preferences and were chosen by two thirds and more of people.
While feature articles and novels might not have much in common, there is a good explanation for the choice: professionals turn into consumers after work. After dealing with rather serious topics during the day, they like to unwind and dive into an entertaining story that takes their mind off to a more carefree environment. Therefore, novels still have their place next to gaming or TV series.
How many books do professionals read on average per year? With the lines of business and private life blurring, making time available for reading books is a real task. Two thirds of professionals read at least one book every other month. Half of those read almost one book per month. Fifteen percent of all read more than 15 books per year.
When it comes to reading content online, ads are not really popular. Almost every second professional uses an ad blocker. Over 75 percent find banners and social media ads especially annoying. That’s why they have already acquired a banner blindness and simply ignore ads.
Today’s marketing is not as desired by everybody as marketers would hope. Over two thirds of our poll participants tend to ignore native ads that use common storytelling techniques to promote a company / product / solution.
Most annoying are TV and radio ads followed by online video and search engine ads.
Good print ads in newspapers or magazines or even billboards received an OK-rating. The types of content found most interesting, however, are stories with a less intrusive marketing touch like blog articles and short stories. For reading those, the majority of professionals are willing to spend up to 10 minutes or more.
Conclusion: There’s life in the old dog named “Reading” and it can be a good companion for content marketers when their focus is rather on sustainable quality than on fast quantity.