In this final instalment of our introduction to the ES SEM 8-10 group, we start by looking at their digital activities; 85% of this group, on a prompted basis, claim to engage in some form of digital activity over the past week – not surprising seeing that smartphones are their second most favourite piece of electronic equipment!
What are their top ten most popular digital activities?
Nearly three quarters of SEM 8-10 use WhatsApp or an instant messaging or chat app in the past week, whilst six out of ten have used social media. They show a certain canniness in their third choice activity namely making or receiving calls using services like Skype, FaceTime or WhatsApp.
Do activities vary across device?
As might be expected, their digital activities vary according to the device they use. They mostly use their cellphones to access the internet, in order to to use instant messaging or social media, followed by search:
Of course, the alert reader might have noticed the exclusion of “making and receiving calls using services such as Skype, FaceTime or WhatsApp” from this graph. The explanation for this, is that the specific ES question which asks about internet access across devices, only lists nine possible activities; whilst an earlier question about broad internet activity lists seventeen possible options.
The second choice for accessing the internet is via desktop or laptop computer, with search, email and banking being the top three activities:
Given the decline in tablet sales internationally in the last couple of years, it is to be expected that tablet usage lags way behind cellphone and desk/laptop usage as a way of accessing the internet. Search is the most popular activity, with social media and email following that.
How frequently do they access the internet?
In the average week, just over half of SEM 8-10 claim access the internet on a daily basis. Of those respondents who have claimed to access the internet in the past year, close to 55% do so several times a day.
On which days do they spend the most time on the internet?
In common with the population as a whole they spend the most time on the internet on weekdays, and the least time on Sundays.
Although SEM 8-10 adults are keen users of digital media, we should recall that they stlll spend the bulk of their media time with traditional broadcast media.
What radio stations do they listen to?
The BRC RAM (Jul 17 – Dec 17) data show that Metro FM has the largest reach amongst SEM 8-10 listeners, followed by RSG and 94.7. By virtue of its size and footprint, Ukhozi FM ranks fourth, but SEM 8-10 show a lower proclivity to listen to it than the population as a whole. Given the metropolitan bias of this market segment, it is predictable that regional commercial stations perform well.
What TV programmes do they watch?
The following data is drawn from the BRC TAM data for the month of February 2018, and is based on averaged programme data. Although four out of five SEM 8-10 viewers have access to pay TV, SABC programmes offer substantial reach into this segment, with local soap operas making a strong showing. February was a watershed month in South African politics, so it is not surprising that The State of the Nation address and Nuus also feature in the top ten.
e.tv’s top programmes also reflect the appeal of local soaps, and suggests the appeal of movies in this broadcaster’s offering:
Looking at the top 10 DStv programmes in February, the appeal of local programming is apparent, as is the importance of sport in this subscription offering:
Read more: Getting to the know the ES SEMS 8-10 (Part 1)
Read more: Getting to know the ES SEMs 8-10 (Part 2)
Having spent some decades working in the media agencies, Britta Reid now relishes the opportunity to take an independent perspective on the South African media world, especially during this time of radical research transformation.
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